Feb. 7, 2004
NASHVILLE, TN - Belmont University erased a 12 point deficit with 6:52 remaining in regulation and went on to defeat Florida Atlantic University, 57-54 in double overtime, Saturday in Nashville, TN. Adam Mark led all scorers with 21 points while Earnest Crumbley led FAU with 18 points. Mike Bell had his seventh double-double of the season with 14 points and a career-high 15 rebounds. FAU fell to 8-13 on the year and 5-9 in the Atlantic Sun Conference while Belmont improved to 16-5 overall and 11-3 in the A-Sun.
FAU led 43-30 at the 8:48 mark of the second half after a three-pointer by Pierre Tucker. A jumper by Bell with 6:52 left gave the Owls a 45-33 lead. The Bruins then scored the next five points to pull to within 45-38 with 4:22 left.
Darren Dickerson made a three-pointer from deep on the right wing to give FAU a 48-38 lead at the 3:53 mark. That would be the last score of regulation for the Owls as the Bruins went on a 10-0 run in the final 3:24.
Mark made back-to-back layups to pull the Bruins within 48-42, and Jese Snyder made two threes in the final two minutes, the last coming with 56 seconds left, to tie the game at 48-48. FAU turned it over on its next possession, and Josh Goodwin missed a three as time expired to send the game into overtime.
In the first overtime period, both teams scored just three points. Bell's layup with 4:19 left was the Owls' only field goal. FAU led 51-49 before Mark connected from short range with 10 seconds left to tie the game at 51. Bell missed a trey as the game went into a second overtime.
The Bruins scored the first four points of the second overtime and led 57-52 before a Crumbley layup as time expired accounted for the final score.
In all, Belmont outscored FAU 24-9 in the final 16:52 of the game. The Owls were held to just three field goals during that stretch.
FAU led 23-18 at the half and actually did not trail from the 12:07 mark of the first half until the 4:43 mark of the second overtime.
"It's very disappointing," said FAU head coach Sidney Green. "I give Belmont credit. They hung in there and executed well."
"We played well," Green added. "The kids followed the game plan exceptionally well. We just have to make shots and free throws. Our guys played so hard, and I'm proud of them." FAU shot 36 percent and held Belmont to 34 percent. The Owls controlled the boards with a 50-39 advantage. FAU shot just 3-for-10 from the line and had 20 turnovers compared to Belmont's 14. Brian Collins added 14 points for the Bruins.
The 57 points allowed were the fewest by FAU this season and the fewest since allowing 56 to Campbell on February 7, 2003. The last time the Owls went to double-overtime was January 12, 2002 at Troy State. The loss was the fifth straight for FAU.
Florida Atlantic next faces Stetson February 12 at FAU Gymnasium.