Earnest Crumbley led FAU with 22 points.
Dec. 30, 2002
IRVINE, CA -- Earnest Crumbley scored a game-high 22 points, but it wasn't enough for Florida Atlantic to stop UC-Irvine Monday night in Irvine, CA. The Owls were defeated 87-70 by the Anteaters.
The difference in the game was a four minute stretch at the end of the first half and the beginning of the second half when UCI (6-3) went on a 15-0 run. FAU (4-8) led 33-32 with 1:34 left in the first half before UCI closed the half on a 5-0 run and led 37-33 at the break.
The Anteaters pulled away in the first 2:54 of the second half, scoring 10 straight points and led 47-33 with 17:06 to play. The Owls could only manage to pull as close as 13 points the rest of the way.
"I liked the way we played in the first half," said FAU head coach Sidney Green. "We executed well and trailed by just four at the half. Unfortunately, we couldn't duplicate that in the second half."
UCI had six players in double figures. Jordan Harris led the team with 18 points. Mike Efevberha had 14 while Adam Parada tossed in 13.
UCI outshot FAU 51 percent to 32 percent and held a 43-35 advantage on the boards. FAU went 28-for-36 from the line compared to UCI's 18-for-28 performance. The Owls committed 14 turnovers while the Anteaters had 13.
"Now we just look forward to starting the second half of our season and defending our conference championship," added Green.
Florida Atlantic next faces Central Florida January 4 at 2:00pm as the Owls open up Atlantic Sun Conference play in Orlando.