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Florida Memorial Upsets No. 7 St. Thomas

Florida Memorial
January 31, 2013
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Story courtesy of Florida Memorial Sports Information

MIAMI GARDENS, Fla. -- Florida Memorial men's basketball team won its biggest game of the season with a 71-68 upset over seventh-ranked St. Thomas (Fla.) on Wednesday night at The Fernandez Family Center. Florida Memorial used a tenacious defense and a balanced offense to steal the win.

After falling behind by nine, 14-5, over the first seven minutes of the game, FMU went on a 12-2 run over the ensuing 5:46 of the game to pull in front 17-16. FMU lead grew to as many as four, but St. Thomas would not back down and would response and end the half on a run of its own to tie the game up at 25-25 at halftime. The first half saw both sides not shoot well with St. Thomas connecting at a 37% (10-for-27) and Florida Memorial connecting at a 33.3% (10-for-30).

In the second half, St. Thomas mounted its largest lead 49-42 with 10:34 to play, but the Lions roared their way back from a seven-point deficit behind two big three's by Antwan Baggs and Adam Braswell. St. Thomas would not go quietly and fought back and forth with Florida Memorial.

The shootout continued with six lead changes in the second half and with 40 seconds to go, St. Thomas made one of two free throw to cut the Florida Memorial lead to 68-66, however Adam Braswell came through at the charity stripe when it was needed most to seal the victory. Braswell knocked down a pair of foul shots to give the Lions a 71-68 lead and iced the game with 1.9 seconds remaining left

St. Thomas threw up a desperation heave at the buzzer that fell short. The victory for Florida Memorial is the first in two years against St. Thomas.

Adam Braswell led the Lions with 21 points three rebounds and three steals. Bryan Portillo had 13 points, 10 rebounds and one steal, Adrian White chipped in 13 points, while Michael Baptiste poured in 11 points and 13 rebounds.

The Lions return to action on Saturday, February 2, 2013, when they travel to Southeastern (Fla.) for a 7 p.m. ET tip-off.

Championship Information

NAIA DII Men's Basketball Championship
Sports Rules - Basketball DII (M)