Knights Fall at USF


Dec. 1, 2007

Box Score | Notes

TAMPA, Fla. (www.ucfathletics.com) - Despite four Knights finishing with double-figures in scoring, the UCF men's basketball team dropped a 75-67 contest at USF on Saturday evening at the Sun Dome. Junior guard Jermaine Taylor (Tavares, Fla./Tavares) paced the Knights (4-3) with 20 points.

Playing a career-high 35 minutes off of the bench, UCF sophomore forward Tony Davis (Sarasota, Fla./Riverview) just missed a triple-double with 10 points, 10 rebounds and a school-record eight blocks.

UCF and the Bulls (5-3) were meeting for the first time since the 2001-02 campaign.

The Knights had the chance to tie the game at 70 with just under one minute to play in the contest, but UCF could not get off a good shot and senior guard Dave Noel's (Boynton Beach, Fla./Boynton Beach) off-balanced 3-point attempt was off the mark.

The Bulls, who finished the game with a 45-33 edge on the glass, grabbed the rebound and quickly scored on a fastbreak layup by Chris Howard to push their lead to five points.

"They (USF) were aggressive and brought the fight to us," said UCF head coach Kirk Speraw. "They were aggressive and assertive and we were not as assertive as we needed to be."

USF's Dominique Jones led all players with 30 points.

The game featured 15 lead changes. The Knights' opened the game on a 10-2 run, but the Bulls shot 52 percent in the first half and took a 38-37 lead into halftime.

The hosts led for most of the second half, but UCF tied the game at 56 with 8:28 to go on a basket from senior center Stanley Billings (Orlando, Fla./Oak Ridge). Jones answered for the Bulls, draining a trey on USF's next possession.

UCF shot 42.4 percent overall, but made just 6-of-21 (28.6 percent) from deep. Billings, who fouled out late in the second half, finished with 10 points in just 12 minutes.

Playing close to home, senior guard Mike O'Donnell (Largo, Fla./Largo) totaled 10 points in 38 minutes. The Knights finished the game with 10 blocks. Davis totaled five of his blocks and eight of his points in the second half for UCF.

USF's Kentrell Gransberry recorded a double-double with 11 points and 15 boards. Jesus Verdejo chipped in with 10 points. The Bulls shot 44.1 percent from the field and 50 percent from 3-point range.

The Knights will return to action on Saturday, Dec. 8, hosting Ole Miss at the new UCF Arena.

For the latest news and information on the Knights, tickets or apparel, log on to www.ucfathletics.com - the official site for UCF varsity sports. Also check out www.ucfphotos.com, the exclusive fan source for UCF action sports pictures.