Feb. 6, 2013
ORLANDO, Fla. - Neil Watson's three-point attempt at the buzzer was no good, and Southern Miss fell to UCF, 60-58, Wednesday night at UCF Arena.
The loss snapped a 10-game winning streak for the Golden Eagles, who fall to 18-5 overall, 7-1 in Conference USA.
"I thought we played extremely hard for 40 minutes," said Southern Miss head coach Donnie Tyndall. "(UCF's) size bothered us at times. We knew we would have to limit their second shots, but they had 13 offensive rebounds. We played very hard, but there were too many second shot opportunities, and late in the game we put them on the foul line too much."
Southern Miss led 53-48 with 5:45 to play after at Watson layup. A minute later, Calvin Newell hit too free throws, followed by consecutive dunks from Tristan Spurlock and Newell that put UCF up 54-53 with 3:20 to play. Davis hit a pair of free throws that put Southern Miss up one, but two free throws from Keith Clanton gave UCF the one-point lead with 2:28.
The Golden Eagles regained the lead on a pair of Daveon Boardingham free throws, but Isaiah Sykes hit a layup for a one-point lead. Brooks hit one-of-two free throws with 1:13 left to tie the game. But Sykes hit a pair to take a 60-58 lead.
Brooks' three-point attempt with four seconds left was blocked by Clanton. Watson had clear look from three at the buzzer, but the ball went off the front of the rim.
Jerrold Brooks got things going for Southern Miss, hitting two straight three-pointers to start the game. Calvin Newell answered with a three of his own, but Jonathan Mills came right back with a layup. After a layup from Isaiah Sykes, Neil Watson hit a three, followed by a pair of jumpers from Dwayne Davis to give the Golden Eagles a 15-5 lead just 4:04 into the game.
A three-pointer by Tristan Spurlock led UCF to six straight points, but Brooks' third three-pointer of the half pushed the lead to 18-11.
A three from Matt Williams and a basket from Sykes cut the deficit to two points, but back-to-back layups from Mills gave Southern Miss a 22-16 lead with 8:27 left in the first half.
UCF then hit five-of-six free throws to tie the game at 27, then took its first lead of the game on Spurlock's second three-pointer. Rashard McGill drilled a jumper, but Spurlock was fouled on a three-point attempt and made all three free throws. Southern Miss closed the half with a layup from Mills, but went into the break trailing, 33-31.
Spurlock led all players with 18 points and seven rebounds. Newell had 13 points and Sykes had 12 points and eight rebounds. Matt Williams added 11 points.
Southern Miss was held to just 36.2-percent (21-of-58) from the field and 27.3-percent (6-of-22) from three-point range. UCF was 18-of-45 (40.0%) from the floor and 8-of-17 (47.1%) from three. Southern Miss won the rebounding battle, 40-to-35.
Southern Miss begins a two-game homestand this Saturday, Feb. 9, when it hosts Memphis. Tip-off is scheduled for 3 p.m. CT and will be nationally-televised by CBS Sports Network.
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