Panthers overcome late deficit, defeat Georgia State

Despite sloppy ball handling and a late game resurgence, the Panthers were able to defeat the Georgia State Panthers, 61-60.

Three Panthers finished the matchup in double figures, including senior forward Tymell Murphy’s third-straight game with at least 20 points.

Murphy finished the game with 23 points on 9-of-12 shooting and 11 rebounds for his sixth double-double of the season. Redshirt senior Rakeem Buckles played a big role on the boards for the Panthers, finishing with a team-high 17 rebounds.

Redshirt junior Dennis Mavin reached a season-high 14 points while freshman Jason Boswell finished with 11. Boswell has recently been seeing more action on the court with the absence of redshirt senior Raymond Taylor, due to an NCAA eligibility investigation.

“I feel like I’m learning, getting a lot of experience, Boswell said. “Coming in I didn’t come in with any expectations. I came here ready to work hard and let it play itself out. I gotta lead my team.”

Though it had been six days since the Panthers last stepped on the hardwood, they were able to start the game on a 7-0 run.

Murphy hit two 3-pointers to start the game, tying his season mark for made threes.  The shot also raised FIU’s streak of successful 3-pointers to 155-straight games, going back to Dec. 20, 2008.

The break did seem to show some faults, as Georgia State began to stop the run and begin clamping down on defense.  Georgia State forced FIU to 21 turnovers, 27 points off those turnovers.

“I don’t know if it was rust, I don’t know what it was but we weren’t in rhythm,” Head Coach Anthony Evans said. “After we made a little bit of a run, they came back at us. We didn’t play with the same intensity.”

The first half ended with the Panthers shooting 44 percent from the field (11-25), 37.5 percent from behind the arc (3-8). Georgia State shot 31 percent from the field (9-29) and 44.4 percent from deep (4-9).

The second half began with five straight points from Boswell after a 5-0 run by Georgia State. With just over a minute left in the game, FIU got their first lead, 59-58, of the half after a three-point play by Mavin.

With Georgia State leading by one, a layup by Buckles gave the Panthers a much-needed one-point lead. The defense then contributed by stopping a would be game winning jumper by State’s Ryan Harrow.

FIU finished with 45.5 percent shooting from the field, (22-of-55) and a total of 49 rebounds, compared to GSU’s 27.

About the Author

Patrick Chalvire
: Radio Host for Panther Sports Talk Live. Assistant Sports Director for The Beacon. Majoring in Communication Arts. Sports fan and aspiring anchor.

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