Men’s Basketball: Conference tournament title hopes fall short in loss to Old Dominion

Head coach Michael Curry falls to 17-45 in his two seasons in charge at FAU


FAU guard Adonis Filer (3) dribbles toward the basket early in the first half versus Old Dominion on Jan. 28. Max Jackson | Staff Photographer

Hans Belot Jr, Contributing Writer

Florida Atlantic men’s basketball’s journey for its first Conference USA title was stopped short on Wednesday with a 72-46 loss to Old Dominion University.

After trailing by only five points at halftime, FAU (8-25, 5-14 C-USA) was outscored by 21 in the second half, allowing Old Dominion (20-12, 13-6 C-USA) to shoot 58 percent from the field in the half.

FAU only shot 31 percent from the field in the game, including 5-for-19 from three-point land, and allowed Old Dominion to shoot 50 percent from the field in the game, including making both of its two three-point attempts.

The Owls were led by sophomore center Ronald Delph’s 16 points and seven rebounds. He was the last player to score for the Owls with three minutes remaining before fouling out.

A back and forth first half saw neither team lead by more than seven points. Although Old Dominion threatened to pull away midway through the first half using a 11-4 run, junior guard Marquan Botley came off the bench and hit a pair of 3-pointers to cut the lead down to three.

Despite a combined 22 points from redshirt senior guard Trey Freeman and redshirt freshman forward Zoran Talley, the Owls went to the locker room only down five, 31-26, by holding the rest of the Monarchs to only 4-of-13 shooting from the field.

FAU also only allowed Old Dominion to shoot 43 percent from the field and did not allow a single three-point attempt in the half. However, the Monarchs grabbed nine offensive rebounds and scored 11 second chance points.

The Monarchs opened the second half on a 17-9 run and never looked back. FAU only shot 24 percent from the field in the half — only making one of the eight attempted 3-pointers.

One day after out-rebounding UTSA by 19 rebounds, FAU was outrebounded by Old Dominion 44-26, including grabbing 16 offensive boards which led to a total of 22 second chance points.

The Monarchs only had five players on the score sheet led by Freeman’s 25 points to go along with six rebounds, and a double-double by redshirt sophomore forward Brandan Stith who recorded 11 points and 11 rebounds, to go with six blocks.

Old Dominion moves on to to face Louisiana Tech in the third round of the conference tournament, while the Owls’ season comes to an end with a record of 8-25, its fifth straight losing season.

Hans Belot Jr. is a contributing writer with the University Press. To contact him regarding this or other stories, he can be reached at [email protected] or on Twitter.