Men’s basketball: FAU sweeps season series over FIU with win

The sweep is the Owls first over the Golden Panthers since 2012.


Senior Adonis Filer scored 18 points in the Owls victory over FIU on Thursday. Ryan Lynch | Editor in Chief

Hans Belot Jr., Sports Editor

After Florida International University took a 47-46 lead, Florida Atlantic men’s basketball used a 15-1 run between the 15:37 and the 9:54 mark in the second half to gain full control of the game and secure an 83-65 victory over the Golden Panthers Thursday night in Miami.

“Defensive stops,” said head coach Michael Curry on the key behind the run. “[We] attacked the rim and that just opened everything up.”

FAU (6-13, 2-6 Conference USA) shot 44 percent from the field, knocking down five 3-pointers, while holding the Panthers (5-16, 1-7 Conference USA) to 43 percent. FAU also forced 16 Panthers turnovers, which led to 18 points for the Owls.

Curry decided to change his starting lineup, putting junior Gerdarius Troutman in the starting five in place of senior Adonis Filer.

The change seemed to work for both players, as they led the Owls in scoring with 18 points each. Sophomore Jeantal Cylla added 16.

“Adonis shoots the basketball better as a [point guard],” said Curry. “ He just doesn’t shoot the same without the basketball in his hands. With Gerdarius running to the three and [junior] William [Pfister] going inside, we were able to get more fast break opportunities.

“It’s not an indictment on them individually on who’s in the starting lineup. I think in a different role, they play their best basketball. For us, it’s about trying to get as many guys possible to play their best basketball.”

The Owls started hot from the field, knocking down four of their first seven shots to take a 9-4 lead. FIU would make a run of its own to take a 24-20 lead with 8:05 left.

FAU would then go on to make seven of the last 10 shots of the half to take a 40-35 lead into halftime. The Owls shot 53 percent overall in the first 12 minutes of the game, while holding the Panthers to 44 percent from the field.

However, both teams combined for 21 turnovers in the first period, leading to 24 points between the teams.

Troutman was hot in the first half, scoring 11 points on 4-of-5 shooting, two of which came from three-point territory.

The Panthers began the second half knocking down five of their first seven shots to retake the lead 47-46, but the Owls were able to regroup and retake control of the game with the run.

Senior Donte McGill led the Panthers with 15 points, but FAU held him to just 6-of-18 from the field.

“We just have to keep being consistent,” said Filer. “In games, film, practice, everything. It’s just going to take consistency. Everything we did this week, we have to come back next week with the same mentality.”

FAU will travel to take on Charlotte on Thursday, Feb. 2, at 7:00 p.m.

Hans Belot Jr. is the sports editor of the University Press. For information regarding this or other stories, email [email protected] or tweet him at @Don_Phenom_.