Knights Fall at Tulsa on Half-Court Buzzer Beater

Box Score (PDF)

TULSA, Okla. - The Knights (17-11, 9-9) couldn't hold on to a 14-point lead in their season finale at Tulsa Sunday, falling 73-72 to the Golden Hurricane (10-19, 4-14 AAC) after Tulsa's Jeriah Horne sunk a half-court shot at the buzzer to give his team the win.

"[Horne] made a big shot so you give him credit for that," said head coach Johnny Dawkins. "But we have to make our free throws and rebound the ball better. Those are things that could have kept us out of that position."

Horne had 21 points and nine rebounds on Tulsa's senior day. Darien Jackson also tacked on 22 for the Hurricane on 8-of-12 shooting from the field, and Sam Griffin scored 15, all in the second half.

UCF's Darin Green Jr. and CJ Walker led the way for the Knights with 19 points each, while Darius Perry chimed in with 17.

The majority of the ballgame favored UCF as the Knights had the lead for over 39 minutes of play, but Tulsa didn't roll over.

The Hurricane chipped away at a 14-point UCF lead with less than 10 minutes to play to work their way back in. The Knights had their chance to close out the game as they were given 18 free throw tries but knocked down just nine.

It wasn't until the final shot of the game that Tulsa took the lead and closed the door on the victory via the half-court heave from Horne.

The loss closed the door on a 17-11 regular season campaign for the Knights, including a 9-9 conference record, both season bests for the Knights since their famous 2018-19 season where they made a run in the NCAA Tournament before falling to Duke in the second round.

With the loss, UCF is locked in as the sixth seed in the 2022 American Athletic Conference Tournament. As the six seed, UCF will face 11th seed South Florida at 7:00 p.m. ET on Thursday, March 10. 

"Of course, we're disappointed with the loss today, but I told our guys we start off 0-0 in the conference tournament. The next phase of the season is about to begin and everybody starts off equal again," said Dawkins.

UCF and South Florida have never previously met in the American Athletic Conference tournament.