UCF Uses Balanced Effort to Ease Past Marshall


Feb. 10, 2007

Box Score | Notes

ORLANDO, Fla. (www.ucfathletics.com) - Junior guard Mike O'Donnell (Largo, Fla./Largo) and sophomore guard Jermaine Taylor (Tavares, Fla./Tavares) each scored 17 points as the UCF men's basketball team used a balanced offensive effort to post a 75-58 Conference USA victory over Marshall at the UCF Arena on Saturday afternoon. Four Golden Knights (18-6, 7-3 C-USA) finished with double-figures in scoring.

UCF has won three-straight contests and improved to 12-1 at home this season with the victory. UCF shot 56 percent overall in the first half and led 45-26 at intermission. The Thundering Herd (9-15, 4-6) got no closer than 12 points in the second half.

"This was a good effort by our basketball team," said UCF head coach Kirk Speraw. "I thought we took control of the game and got on top of things early. We took care of our priorities."

Senior forward Josh Peppers (Memphis, Tenn./Whitehaven) hit two triples and had eight points as the hosts used a 16-4 run to pull away midway through the first half. His 3-pointer with 7:59 to play in the opening period capped the spurt and gave UCF a 34-18 edge. The Golden Knights hit four treys during the run and made seven during the first half.

Senior forward Lavell Payne (Fort Lauderdale, Fla./Dillard) registered 15 points and a team-high seven rebounds in the win. Peppers scored 14 points and added five rebounds and two blocks. In 21 minutes of action off of the bench, junior guard Chip Cartwright (Houston, Texas/Phillis Wheatley) dished out a team-high five assists.

O'Donnell shot 7-of-11 from the floor and along with Taylor, made three triples. UCF shot 45.5 percent overall for the game and went 16-of-18 (88.9 percent) at the free-throw line.

Marshall turned the ball over 19 times and UCF scored 26 of its points off of turnovers.

Markel Humphrey paced Marshall with 13 points and Tre Whitted added 12 off of the bench. In only 15 minutes, the Thundering Herd's Tyler Wilkerson grabbed a game-high 10 boards.

UCF begins a two-game road swing on Wednesday, playing at Tulane at 8 p.m. Eastern. The Golden Knights' next home contest is slated for Wednesday, Feb. 21 against Southern Miss.

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