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Owls' Rally Comes Up Short

Jan. 28, 2004

Final Stats

ORLANDO, FL -- UCF raced out to a 43-27 halftime lead and held off a Florida Atlantic University rally to defeat the Owls 75-66 Wednesday night in Orlando, FL. The win was the 14th straight for the Golden Knights as they improved to 16-2 on the year and 11-0 in the A-Sun. FAU fell to 8-10 overall and 5-6 in the A-Sun.

Roberto Morentin led all scorers with a career-high 24 points to go along with 10 rebounds. Mike Bell led the Owls with 19 points and 10 rebounds. Jeff Cowans scored 12.

FAU opened the game with a brief two-point lead before UCF opened up a 10-point cushion middway through the half. A three-point play by Earnest Crumbley at the 7:15 mark made it 30-23 UCF. The Golden Knights then closed the half on a 13-4 run and led by 16 at the break. The biggest difference in the first half was a 32-13 edge by UCF on the boards.

UCF led 46-27 with 19:41 left in the game before FAU, or more specifically, Bell, mounted a rally. Bell scored the next 10 points as a 10-2 run pulled the Owls within 48-37 at the 16:07 mark. With UCF leading 53-39, FAU then scored eight straight points, capped off by a Bell jumper, to pull to within 53-47 with 11:12 left.

That's as close as FAU would get as UCF opened up as much as a 14-point lead down the stretch. Dexter Lyons added 16 points for the Golden Knights while Josh Bodden scored 11.

FAU outshot UCF 41 percent to 40 percent. The Owls finished 6-for-17 from beyond the arc but were just 12-for-26 from the line. UCF finished with a 51-32 edge on the boards.

FAU next faces Troy State, February 2, at FAU Gymnasium.



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