Brett Shweky // Staff Writer
The Panthers opened their three-game home stand against the (15-3) Middle Tennessee Blue Raiders with a 65-52 loss on Thursday, Jan. 19. Middle Tennessee remains undefeated in conference play, improving its C-USA record to 6-0.
From the beginning FIU struggled to match the Blue Raiders defense, only scoring 25 points in the first half. The Panthers shot for 39.3 percent, only converting 11 of 28 while only making one three-pointer in the first half.
“The team needs to be more aggressive offensively, at times I felt we went passive when Middle Tennessee went to the zone defense,” Head Coach Anthony Evans said.
For Middle Tennessee, Jacorey Williams scored 21 points, making six of 10 from the field. Williams also was the leading-rebounder of the game with 8 total rebounds.
Coach Evans said the game plan going into the game was to try and slow WIlliams down, and be aggressive as possible.
“JaCorey’s a good player, we knew that going into the game, so we were hoping to limit him as much as possible,” Evans said.
This is the second straight game Williams was able to score over 20 points.
Now on a six-game losing streak, the Panthers hope to turn it around against the University of Alabama at Birmingham Blazers. The (12-7) UAB Blazers played in a nail-biter Thursday, Jan. 19 against the Florida Atlantic University Owls winning 80-78. Tip-off is set for Saturday, Jan. 21 at 7 p.m. at Lime Court in the FIU arena.