Conference USA Basketball Round-Up: December 7

Florida Atlantic handles Jacksonville 83-63

BOCA RATON, Fla. (AP) — Pablo Bertone scored 20 points, leading a hot-shooting Florida Atlantic offense in an 83-63 win over Jacksonville on Saturday.

Florida Atlantic (3-6) shot 52.7 percent (29 of 55) from the field as four players reached double figures for the Owls.

Florida Atlantic never trailed against Jacksonville (3-5), opening the game on a 14-1 spurt, led by six points from Marquan Botley. Jackson Trapp made a pair of free throws with 6:27 left to give the Owls a double-digit lead that held for the remainder of the contest.

Kelvin Penn scored 15 points, Trapp added 12 and D’Andre Johnson had 10 for Florida Atlantic.

Jarvis Haywood scored 19 points to lead Jacksonville.

Florida Atlantic won its second straight game after suffering a six-game losing streak. The Owls defeated Jacksonville for the fourth consecutive time in the series.

— Associated Press

Tulane holds off Jackson State 70-65

NEW ORLEANS (AP) — Jay Hook poured in 31 points on 10 of 16 shooting to pace Tulane over Jackson State 70-65 on Saturday.

Tulane (5-5) got 16 points from Jonathan Stark and 11 points from Louis Dabney, while Trevante Drye grabbed 10 boards.

Jackson State (2-7) was led by Julysses Nobles with 23 points. Brandon West and Javeres Brent both chipped in with 14 points.

The Wave build an 11-point lead with 3:54 left in the first half on Hook’s long 3-pointer and subsequent layup. But an 11-3 run by Jackson State closed the gap to three points at the half.

Tulane pushed its lead to 12 after a Hook trey and a pair of made free throws by Payton Henson, but the Tigers roared back to take the lead at 60-59 with 3:16 left on a Nobles free throw.

Tulane then made 9 of 12 free throws to ice it.

— Associated Press

FIU defeats Florida Gulf Coast 72-61

MIAMI (AP) — Tymell Murphy scored 10 of his game-high 23 points during a 16-5 second half run to end the game and give Florida International a 72-61 victory over Florida Gulf Coast Saturday.

Murphy was a perfect 10 of 10 from the line. Rakeem Buckles scored 11 points and grabbed 13 rebounds to lead FIU (8-4). Buckles earned his sixth double-double and the ninth of his career. Dennis Mavin also scored in double figures for the Golden Panthers, shooting 7 of 15 from the floor on his way to 19 points.

Brett Comer and Chase Fieler each scored 14 points, and Bernard Thompson added 10 to lead Florida Gulf Coast (4-4). Jamail Jones added 9 points and a team-high 10 rebounds. After a Nick Hicks layup with 7:45 remaining, the Eagles shot just 2 of 12 from the floor the rest of the game.

— Associated Press

Penn State beats Marshall 90-77

STATE COLLEGE, Pa. (AP) — Ross Travis scored 20 points and Donovan Jack’s 18 points, seven blocked shots and seven rebounds enabled Penn State to race past Marshall 90-77 on Saturday.

D.J. Newbill scored 17 points while Brandon Taylor and Tim Frazier each added 10 as the Nittany Lions rebounded after back-to-back losses to Mississippi and Pittsburgh.

The Nittany Lions (7-3) have scored 70 points in all but one of their games this season and their transition offense built as much as a 26-point lead before Marshall closed the gap late.

Jack’s seven blocks were the most in a game by a Penn State player since 1999, and his team-high seven rebounds allowed Penn State to win that battle as well against the Thundering Herd (4-5) 47-40.

Penn State shot 48.5 percent overall, as its 53 percent effort in the first half enabled the Lions to race out to a 47-32 halftime edge.

The Nittany Lions were able to work under the baskets with numerous slam dunks off of fast breaks or their 13 offensive rebounds, and their front-court of Travis, Jack and Taylor scored 48 points.

The Thundering Herd entered the game scoring 85.8 points per game, good for 20th among NCAA statistical leaders, but couldn’t generate a consistent offensive pace against Penn State, shooting 39.4 percent overall.

Kareem Canty scored 28 points for Marshall, which was slowed by eight first-half turnovers and a 7 for 13 effort from the foul line.

Canty’s successful 40-foot heave at the first-half buzzer brought Marshall to within 47-32 but the Thundering Herd were unable to push any momentum forward.

Elijah Pittman added 10 points for Marshall, well under his 23-point scoring average. He had converted 27 3-pointers in eight games for the Thundering Herd but connected on just one against the Lions.

Marshall opened with 1 for 11 shooting before an 11-2 run to pull to within 13-11 early but Penn State ran off seven straight points and the Herd never recovered.

— Associated Press

Southern Miss tops Georgia State 75-65 in overtime

HATTIESBURG, Miss. (AP) — Neil Watson scored 18 points, including the game-tying 3-pointer to force overtime, as Southern Mississippi defeated Georgia State 75-65 on Saturday.

Southern Mississippi (8-1) led for most of the contest before Georgia State (3-6) took a 55-54 lead with 3:29 left. The Panthers went up 59-54 before Southern Mississippi erased the deficit in the final 56 seconds.

Aaron Brown hit a 3-pointer before Watson made 1 of 2 free throws to come within 60-58 with 13 seconds left. Georgia State’s Devonta White then made 1 of 2 free throws, leaving the door open for Watson’s game-tying 3-pointer.

Southern Mississippi took control in overtime, outscoring Georgia State 14-4. The Panthers were just 1 of 11 from the field in the extra session.

Michael Craig added 10 points and 12 rebounds for Southern Mississippi. Brown and Daveon Boardingham had 14 and 12, respectively.

Ryan Harrow scored 20 points for Georgia State.

— Associated Press

Rice beats S. Alabama 96-93 in 3OT on 3 at buzzer

HOUSTON (AP) — Max Guercy hit a game-winning 3-pointer at the buzzer to give Rice a 96-93 victory of South Alabama in triple overtime.

Guercy scored the final seven points for the Owls (4-5) in the third overtime, including a jumper to tie the score at 93-93 with 1:09 left and the game-winner. Guercy finished with 20 points while Sean Obi had 25 points and 19 rebounds for Rice.

Augustine Rubit hit two free throws for South Alabama (5-4) with 19 seconds left in regulation to tie the game at 67-67 and force overtime.

The trend of late, game-tying free throws continued for the Jaguars with Mychal Ammons making two with 34 seconds left in the first overtime to force a second frame.

In the second overtime, Antoine Allen hit two free throws for South Alabama with 18 seconds left to force a third extra period. Allen finished with 26 points.

— Associated Press

UAB gets by Northeastern 74-69

BOSTON (AP) — Fahro Alihodzic and Robert Williams combined for seven points in the final 90 seconds to assure UAB a 74-69 win over Northeastern Saturday night.

Alihodzic, who had 13 points, made a layup and two free throws in the final seconds and Williams contributed two free throws as UAB (7-2) outscored Northeastern 7-1 to end the game.

Northeastern (2-7) held a 68-67 advantage on two Scott Eatherton free throws with 1:49 remaining.

Chad Frazer led UAB with 19 points, and 6 rebounds. Jordan Swing had 14 and Rod Rucker added 12 for UAB.

UAB outrebounded Northeastern 45 to 29.

The Blazers jumped out to an early 16-8 lead but Northeastern led 31-30 at the half. They stretched that to 48-40 at the 13:39 mark. The Blazers tied the score at 50 midway in the second period.

Eatherton had 21 points and 10 rebounds, his seventh double-double this season, for Northeastern.

— Associated Press

Louisiana Tech beats Southern University 69-50

RUSTON, La. (AP) — Chris Anderson scored 15 points Saturday night and Louisiana Tech came from behind to beat Southern University 69-50.

Southern University (2-7) led 27-23 on a layup by YonDarius Johnson at 4:04, but Louisiana Tech (7-2) went on a 7-0 run and finished the first half with a 35-29 lead. Southern outshot Louisiana Tech 39.3 percent from the field to 36.7 percent in the half, but committed 14 personal fouls which the Bulldogs converted into 10 free-throw points.

Anderson made two jumpers and a free throw to open the second half and Louisiana Tech burst ahead with short runs, leading by as many as 21 points after finishing a 9-0 run with 1:28 to play. The Jaguars had 23 turnovers to nine for the Bulldogs.

Raheem Appleby scored 13 points for the Bulldogs and Kenneth Smith added 10.

Tre Lynch led the Jaguars with 14 points and Johnson had 12.

— Associated Press

Texas-San Antonio beats Texas-Pan American 72-65

EDINBURG, Texas (AP) — Hyjii Thomas scored a career-high 24 points as Texas-San Antonio pulled away from Texas-Pan American 72-65 Saturday night.

Keon Lewis added 20 points and five assists for the Roadrunners.

Lewis hit a 3-pointer in the first half to give UTSA (3-6) a 21-9 lead. UTPA (4-7) chipped away, cutting the lead to 33-29 at the break after Shaquille Boga hit a 3-pointer and Shaquille Hines got a dunk.

The Broncs never trailed by double figures in the second half, but couldn’t overcome UTSA either.

Farrell hit two free throws to get to 59-57 with 3:19 left, but Lewis found Phillip Jones for a dunk on the next possession. The Roadrunners hit 11 of 12 free throws in the final 2:20 to ice the game.

Farrell finished with 16 points while Boga added 11 and tied his career-high with seven assists.

UTSA finished 31 of 39 from free-throw line.

— Associated Press

UTEP puts away Sacramento State 69-51

EL PASO, Texas (AP) — McKenzie Moore scored 14 points and John Bohannon added 13 with nine rebounds to help UTEP defeat Sacramento State 69-51 Saturday night.

The Miners (5-4) held a slim two-point lead in the first half, but surged with a 16-5 run holding Sacramento State scoreless for nearly eight minutes as they moved to a 34-21 lead at the break. C.J. Cooper ignited the run with a 3-pointer and Matt Willms added a dunk, layup and two free throws.

Moore was a perfect 10 of 10 from the free-throw line and had seven rebounds. Willms finished with 12 points and Julian Washburn hauled in a game-high 10 rebounds.

Sacramento State (2-4) couldn’t close the gap, shooting just 28.8 percent from the field and being outrebounded 45-30. Mikh McKinney paced the Hornets with a game-high 22 points on 8-of-17 shooting, but was the only Sacramento State player in double figures.

— Associated Press