Trineca McCleod led FAU with 18 points and 10 rebounds.
Jan. 8, 2004
BOCA RATON, FL -- Florida Atlantic University was defeated by Mercer University, 66-62, Thursday night in Boca Raton. FAU battled back from a 14-point halftime deficit and took a brief lead before Mercer came back to win the game. The loss drops FAU to 2-9 on the year and 1-3 in the Atlantic Sun Conference. The Bears improved to 5-6 overall and 3-1 in the A-Sun.
Mercer's Jessica Miller scored 21 first half points and finished with a game-high 27 points and 14 rebounds. FAU was led by Trineca McCleod's 18 points and 10 rebounds. DeeAnna Hanscom had 11 points and eight rebounds.
FAU used a 9-0 run early in the game to lead 13-7 at the 14:36 mark of the first half. The Bears, behind five first half three-pointers by Miller, outscored FAU 36-16 the rest of the half for a 43-29 halftime lead.
The Lady Owls slowly chipped into the deficit in the second half and pulled to within 47-42 with 12:34 remaining. Mercer built its lead back to 51-42 before FAU closed to within five points again on a lay-up by Jackie Brown at the 10:27 mark.
Mercer then went on a 7-2 run to take a 58-48 lead with 8:23 remaining before the Lady Owls mounted their biggest run of the night.
FAU outscored Mercer 13-1 over the next 5:29 to lead 61-59 with 2:54 remaining. The run included a pair of free throws by McCleod to tie the game at the 3:19 mark. She then scored on a lay-up to give FAU the lead. That would turn out to be FAU's last lead of the night as Mercer closed the game on a 7-1 run.
Free throw shooting once again proved to be a nemesis for FAU as it finished the game 15-for-28 from the line, but just 11-for-22 in the second half. Trailing 58-52 at the 7:06 mark of the second half to the 3:48 mark when they trailed 59-57, the Lady Owls went 1-for-9 from the stripe.
For the game, FAU shot 34 percent while Mercer went 47 percent from the field. The Lady Owls held a 41-40 advantage on the boards. Mercer committed 31 turnovers compared to FAU's 21.
Florida Atlantic next faces Georgia State Saturday night at 7:00pm at FAU Gymnasium.