March 4, 2007
LAFAYETTE, LA - After an overtime thriller in the first round, the no. 6 seed Florida Atlantic University men's basketball team is in Lafayette, LA to face the no. 3 seed Western Kentucky at the Cajun Dome at 10 p.m., on Sunday.
FAU (16-14) overcame a nine-point deficit in the second half to force overtime against no. 11 Florida International following two critical free throws by DeAndre Rice and a great block as time expired by Carlos Monroe. A desperation three at the horn wouldn't fall for the Golden Panthers, and the Owls advanced to the second round of a conference postseason tournament for the fourth time in its history, first since the 2001-02 Atlantic Sun Championship team.
The Owls have played the Hilltoppers (21-10) tough in both previous meetings, with the road team winning each contest. WKU picked up a 93-83 win at FAU Arena, overcoming a five-point deficit at the break and ankle injuries to Courtney Lee and Jeremy Evans.
FAU returned the favor, picking up a 78-73 win in Bowling Green, KY later in the year. The Owls once again held a halftime lead, 37-35, and this time they held on by shooting 60.0 percent in both halves. FAU had four players finish in double-figures and came up with three critical steals in the final minute to preserve the margin. Monroe's 26 points and 12 rebounds were both game highs. WKU earned a bye in the tournament's first round by having the best regular-season record by a non-division winner.
This time, there's more on the line. Much more, as the loser goes home and the winner advances to the tournament's semifinals to face the winner of no. 2 Arkansas State/no. 7 New Orleans. FAU was 2-0 against UNO, 0-1 against ASU on the season. The semifinal game will be played on Monday at 10 p.m., and will be broadcast on ESPN+. The finals of the SBC Tournament will be held on Tuesday at 9 p.m., and will be broadcast on ESPN2.
Fans can listen to every minute of FAU's games all postseason long on FAUSports.com. Lance Davis will bring you all the action as the Owls make a push for the Sun Belt's automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament. The entire tournament is available on SunBeltSports.org via webstream. Fans can watch every minute of every contest for just $9.99. Michael Wagenheim will provide the play-by-play for the tournament.