SAN ANTONIO –UTSA men’s basketball team (7-12, 1-5 AAC) rebounded from back-to-back offensive setbacks with a powerful shooting display on Sunday at the Convocation Center, pushing 23rd-ranked Florida Atlantic (15-4, 5-1 AAC) to the brink in regulation. However, the Owls put down key shots to pull away from the Roadrunners in overtime for the 112-103 Florida Atlantic win. Leading all scorers, guard Jordan Ivy-Currytallied the most points since 2020, notching 38 to lead the Roadrunners to their second overtime against a ranked opponent in as many tries this season.
After stumbling offensively in the second half at Tulsa, to say UTSA came out firing would be an understatement – a fitting start for the season’s largest home crowd in a White Out. Isaiah Wyatt drained a three in the first 14 seconds to kick off three consecutive unanswered UTSA scoring possessions in the first 90 seconds, all from long range. In fact, the Roadrunners scored on the first five opportunities and made five of their first six shots to open up a 13-8 lead by the first media timeout.
Ivy-Curry pulled up for a three with 11:42 on the clock to deliver a double-digit lead for the Roadrunners at 25-15, with UTSA outscoring Florida Atlantic 11-5 over the next two minutes to reach a game-high 16-point lead on Carlton Linguard Jr. triple with 9:24 to go. However, the Owls began to limit the Roadrunners and Johnell Davis’ pull-up three sparked an 18-4 run that whittled the UTSA advantage down to just four points across the next four minutes – Davis scored nine for the Owls in the rally. The Roadrunners pushed back out, but FAU brought things too close for comfort in the final minute, coaxing the deficit to just two. Christian Tucker closed out the half with a pair from the charity stripe and UTSA led 53-49 at the half.
Five straight Florida Atlantic points out of the locker room gave the Owls their first lead after two minutes of second-half action, but Wyatt was there to reclaim the advantage with his first non-perimeter bucket of the day. Massal Diouf combined with Ivy-Curry to score the nine points for UTSA, rebuilding a seven-point lead. The Roadrunners maintained the upper hand into the final five minutes, but Nick Boyd’s driving layup flipped the leader spot for the first time in 13 minutes, setting off a string of eight lead changes or ties down the stretch. Trailing by one with just under a minute on the clock, Tucker found Linguard for the go-ahead lay-in at 89-88 and Tucker made a pair at the line to put UTSA up three within sight of a major upset. But Davis was able to draw a three-shot foul with 16 seconds and buried all three to tie it at 91. Linguard’s buzzer-beating three on the other end was off-target, forcing the Roadrunners to head to their fourth overtime of the year.
The opening two minutes of the extra period stayed to a single possession, but the dam broke when Florida Atlantic’s Elijah Martin converted on a hoop-and-harm play, then put down a three on the next possession – lifting the Owls to outscore UTSA 14-7 for the remaining three minutes to survive the upset bid and claim the 112-103 win.
Leading the way to UTSA’s third game eclipsing the century mark, Ivy-Curry’s 38 points is the most for a UTSA player since Jhivvan Jackson also put in 38 against Florida Atlantic on Feb. 27, 2020. Shooting a career-high 10-for-20 from the field and 4-for-8 from three, Ivy-Curry also recorded 14-of-17 shooting at the line for a career best and UTSA season high – while also collecting a team-high seven rebounds.
Registering a career-high 12 assists along with 19 points of his own for his second points/assists double-double of the year, Tucker logged the most assists since Devin Gibson also had 12 versus Samford on Dec. 20, 2010. Unsurprising for the AAC’s top free throw shooter, Tucker was a perfect 10-for-10 at the line.
The Roadrunners shot 49.3 percent from the field and 44.4 percent from the perimeter, with Wyatt and Diouf also reaching double-figures –Diouf matching his career-high scoring from the Oregon State game.
UTSA will have its first back-to-back home games since the opening week of the month, hosting Tulane next Wednesday, Jan. 24, with a 7 p.m. tipoff for Suits and Sneakers for Cancer. The Green Wave are coming off an upset at home, knocking off 10th-ranked Memphis, 81-79, on Sunday at Devlin Fieldhouse. The weekend will see UTSA travel to South Florida for a Saturday, Jan. 27 matchup with the Bulls in Tampa.
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