Knights Unable to Complete Rally at SMU


Feb. 26, 2010

Box Score

By Andrew Gavin

Feb. 25, 2010
Dallas, Texas (Moody Coliseum)
Team 1st 2nd Final
SMU 30 39 69
UCF 22 39 61

UCF (8-15, 5-9 C-USA)
Patrick, Aisha 4-10 4-4 12; Daniels, D'Nay 5-15 0-1 10; White, Marshay 4-8 1-1 9; Kelly, Ashia 3-7 2-2 9; Cannon, Emma 4-9 0-2 8; Wiley, Chelsie 2-7 0-0 5; Carter, Gevenia 2-4 0-0 4; Mealing, Angelica 1-4 1-2 3; Caldwell, Jelisa 0-3 1-2 1. Totals 25-67 9-14 61.

SMU (18-9, 8-6 C-USA)
SAMUELS, Jillian 5-11 4-5 17; GILLIAM, Brittany 4-15 4-6 13; DAY, Haley 4-9 3-4 13; FILMORE, Alisha 2-3 5-6 9; SHELTON, Sarah 4-4 0-1 8; MAHNESMITH, Samantha 2-6 0-0 5; ELLIOTT, Christine 2-8 0-2 4. Totals 23-56 16-24 69.

DALLAS, Texas (UCFAthletics.com) - Flying out of halftime like a completely different team, UCF corrected all of its problems from a sluggish first half that left them trailing by eight points. The Knights dominated the glass, scored in the paint, limited its turnovers and knocked down shots to the tune of 51.8 percent.

Looking for their second road win in C-USA play, UCF trailed just 58-57 with 4:31. Then, out of nowhere, the Knights regressed and looked like the team that scored just 22 points in the opening half. UCF (8-15, 5-9 C-USA) missed six-straight shots, all within five feet from the basket, and SMU (18-9, 8-6 C-USA) scored six-straight points to pull away to a 69-61 victory.

It was another frustrating loss in a close game for the Knights, who had played much better basketball over the past few weeks and were coming off a 78-66 impressive victory over Houston last Saturday.

Now 1-5 on the road in conference play, UCF heads to Tulsa to play Saturday at 3 p.m. EST before finishing regular season play at Southern Miss on Wednesday. The Knights will be looking to gain momentum before defending their C-USA Tournament title beginning March 8.

As well as UCF played in the second half, the problems at the end of the game were too much to overcome, as was the early hole the team dug itself. SMU raced out to an early 10-2 lead as the Knights started the game 1-for-11 from the field. The Mustang lead ballooned to as many as 13 with 3:34 remaining before UCF closed the half on a 7-2 run to cut the halftime deficit to 30-22.

The Knights had 23 offensive rebounds in another dominating rebound performance, but only totaled 12 second-chance points. Junior Emma Cannon (Rochester, N.Y.) had nine of her game-high 16 rebounds on the offensive glass as UCF outrebounded SMU 48-34.

Sophomore Aisha Patrick scored all 12 of her points in the second half to lead UCF's rally. The Knights led four times in the second half, the last time on a Marshay White (Rochester, N.Y.) layup with 6:05 to play. Junior D'Nay Daniels (Atlanta, Ga.) was the only other Knight in double figures with 10 points.

Jillian Samuels led all scorers with 17 points, including three makes from long range. All-conference player Brittney Gilliam scored 13 points for the Mustangs, but was held to just 4-for-15 shooting primarily by the suffocating defense of Patrick.