Alone At The Top
FAU continued its best start ever in Sun Belt play (3-0) with a 65-57 win over visiting South Alabama tonight at FAU Arena.
Florida Atlantic (10-6, 3-0) saw three players in double figures, but it was Brett Royster who had the best overall showing posting a season high 14 points to go with eight rebounds and four blocks.
“He played a solid game”, Head Coach Mike Jarvis said.
Royster was joined by Ray Taylor (15), and Greg Gantt (14).
Having some trouble finding the basket early on, the Owls trailed the Jaguars 6-3 but soon responded with a 12-0 run to take command and never trail for the remainder of the contest.
In a low scoring first frame, FAU led 27-17 at the break, setting a new mark for fewest points allowed in a half on the season.
Seeing that an inside game was not going to pay dividends against the home team, South Alabama tried to go to outside the arc with their attempts in the second, only to finish with a paltry 3-of-18 display overall.
And, after a poor performance during the first :30 of their last outing against Florida Memorial, Jarvis was happy to see his team step up in on the ball pressure.
“The defense was really good because all five guys were involved…which is what team defense is all about”, said Jarvis.
The Jaguars (7-7, 1-2) pulled to within just three at the 15:53 mark of the second half until the Owls countered, building their largest lead at 14 with 9:43 remaining after Taylor connected on his third triple of the night.
They would enjoy no less than a six point margin down the stretch.
South Alabama was without its second leading scorer in Martino Brock (14.0 ppg) due to injury, and was led by Tim Williams’ 21 points, and 10 rebounds.
Pablo Bertone got his first start on the season for FAU in place of Alex Tucker, finishing with three points and two rebounds in 11 minutes of action.
Florida Atlantic continues their four game home stand against Arkansas State on Saturday at 7:00 p.m. The Red Wolves lost to FIU 75-70 tonight in Miami.
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