Men’s Basketball: Owls complete season sweep over North Texas with comeback victory

The Owls were able to hold on to the four-point victory despite leading for only six minutes of the game.


Jaden Wiston

Junior guard Bryan Greenly dribbling the ball up the court against Charlotte on Jan. 7, 2023.

Jahadonai Brammer, Contributing Writer

FAU men’s basketball (16-1, 6-0 C-USA) took down the University of North Texas Mean Green (14-4, 5-2 C-USA) 66-62 Saturday afternoon, trailing closely behind until overtaking late in the game constituting their 15th win. 

“I wish I could say I had a big motivational speech but it was the facts,” said head coach Dusty May. “We had a little friction in the huddle and I thought that lit a fire under our guys and they all responded.”

Despite quickly falling behind, some early contributions from the Owls’ bench kept them in the game. Shortly after checking into the game, sophomore guard Johnell Davis scored his first points, changing the game’s momentum, as the Owls attempted to close the early gap.

An eight-point scoring run by the Owls temporarily shrunk North Texas’ lead to one. That was until the Mean Green proceeded to go on a run of their own, stretching their lead back to seven with 4:44 to play in the first half.

Following a three-point rampage by the Mean Green in the first half (7-of-10), for one of few times this season, FAU went into the second half trailing by five. 

That trend continued in the second half, as junior guard Tylor Perry sank his fourth three-pointer, leaving North Texas’ lead at five with 9:39 left in regulation.

We thought for 30 minutes, they were the more physical and aggressive team,” said May. “Then the last 10 minutes, our guys really tightened up defensively.”

With five minutes left in the game, the momentum switched as Davis hit a mid range jump shot to give the Owls a 57-56 lead, their first of the second half. A possession later, sophomore forward Giancarlo Rosado sank a fadeaway with one second left on the shot clock keeping FAU’s lead to 59-56.

After both teams traded scoring possessions in the coming minutes, with 31 seconds in regulation Perry had the opportunity to slim the Owls’ lead to one with a pair of free throws. 

However, after he missed the second attempt, sophomore center Vladislav Goldin grabbed the rebound and drew a foul. Goldin made both of his free throws, which effectively sealed the four-point victory for FAU. 

Davis left his impact on the game as he finished the night as the Owls’ leading scorer with 16 points, three rebounds, and an assist. Goldin wasn’t far behind as he collected 12 points and 8 rebounds. 

Due in part to an efficient second half, FAU ended the night shooting 47.8% from the field and 37% from three-point range. The Owls’ bench also provided a needed spark, out scoring the Mean Green’s bench 38-13. 

“This group is very poised, they’re together. Even when there’s friction, they stay together and love each other and support each other. That’s a sign of a really good team,” said May.

The Owls will now prepare for another conference matchup against Western Kentucky University (11-6, 3-3 C-USA) on Monday, Jan. 16. The game is scheduled for 7 p.m and will be broadcast on ESPNU.

Jahadonai Brammer is a contributing writer for the University Press. For more information regarding this or other stories, email [email protected] or DM her instagram @jahadonaib