The Golden Eagles dropped their final home game of the season and senior day against Florida Atlantic 94 – 82, behind the Owls’ 61.2 field goal percentage.
The Golden Eagles found the strong start they had been looking for the past several games. Yet, the team soon found themselves in a battle of runs against the Owls.
“Tonight we really struggled defensively,” said Head Coach Doc Sadler. “I can’t think of another time that we have. We just missed a lot of assignments and how to guard and gave them open looks.”
At the start of the first half, the Golden Eagles experienced several lead changes and ties totaling to four ties and six lead changes by the end of the half.
However, the Owls broke the stalemate going on a 7 – 0 run at 23 – 16. But, the Golden Eagles fought back into the game with a 10 – 3 run to eventually tie the game at 26.
The Owls responded again as they took advantage of a Golden Eagle field goal drought lasting over three minutes by extending their lead before the end of the half at 41-36.
Despite winning the early rebound battle 21 – 15, the lack of Golden Eagle shooting helped keep Florida Atlantic in front. Sophomore guard Cortez Edwards helped put the Eagles up early with his 11 points and Michael Ramey hitting a pair of three-pointers to get his total up to eight points.
The Golden Eagles could not slow down the efficiency of FAU’s offense, led by Gerdarius Troutman who hit seven three-pointers totaling 25 points for the night.
The Owls began to wear on the Golden Eagles and rebuilt their lead to 11 points after the Golden Eagles cut it down to five points. Once the Owls got their lead back to double-digits, they continued to pour it on building their leads by as much as 17 points.
The Golden Eagles managed to close the gap to within 11 points at 89 – 78, but could not overcome the deficit.
“We just couldn’t stop them,” Sadler said. “You got to give them credit, but when you score 80 points at home you are supposed to win.”
Edwards had a career-high 26 points and ten rebounds, making him the first Golden Eagle to achieve back-to-back double-doubles since 2015.
Along with Edwards’ career night, three other Golden Eagles scored in double-digits; senior Quinton Campbell had 17 points, Ramey had 12 points and sophomore Eddie Davis had 12 points with seven rebounds. Notably, the team only had two turnovers the entire night.
The Golden Eagles will start their final road trip against Rice on Feb. 23 at 7 p.m. in hopes of qualifying for the conference tournament.