VIDEO HIGHLIGHTS: Florida Tech Panthers Defeat Tampa 96-74 For Third Straight Win
By Daniel Supraner, Florida Tech Sports // January 13, 2018
Panthers 9-8 overall, 4-5 in SSC Play
ABOVE VIDEO: Steve Wilson of the Friday Night Locker Room and Space Coast Daily reports from Florida Tech Clemente Center following the Panthers third straight win. Steve speaks with Jordan Majors, who scored a game-high 32 points in the 96-74 win over Tampa.
BREVARD COUNTY • MELBOURNE, FLORIDA — Jordan Majors scored a season-high 32 points as the Florida Tech men’s basketball team earned a blowout victory over Tampa, 96-74, in Sunshine State Conference action Saturday afternoon at the Clemente Center.
The Panthers (9-8, 4-5 SSC), who led wire-to-wire in the contest, have now won three games in a row, while Tampa drops to 7-8 overall and 3-6 in the SSC.
Majors reached the 32-point mark while shooting 69 percent from the field (11-for-16), including 5-for-6 from beyond the arc. The redshirt-senior also knocked down 5-for-6 at the charity stripe and added four assists and three rebounds.
Sam Daniel recorded 19 points and 10 rebounds for his fifth double-double of the season.
Patrick Anderson also scored 19 points on 6-for-9 shooting to go along with a game-high seven steals. Richard Coil finished with 13 points and six boards and Valur Valsson dished out a game-best 11 assists.
As a team, Florida Tech shot 57.1 percent (36-for-63) against the Spartans and made 9-for-24 on three-point attempts. UT went 45.5 percent from the field (25-for-55) and hit 11-for-26 from long range.
The Spartans struggled all game against the Panthers’ zone defense, coughing up 24 turnovers which turned into 33 points for FIT. The Panthers also finished with more rebounds, 33-30, and dominated the Spartans in the paint, 50-26.
“I thought we did a tremendous job defensively against a really good team,” said head coach Billy Mims. “We did great on offense as well and scored 48 points in both halves. I told our guys before the ball game that if we shoot the ball well, outrebound them and defend well, then we are going to win this game. That’s exactly what we did tonight.”
A slow start to the contest found the teams tied 11-11 after a three-pointer by UT’s Alberto Moreno with 14:29 to go in the first half. Majors answered with a three of his own on the ensuing possession and from there the Panthers were off and running as they scored 10 straight points and took a 21-11 lead with 12:47 remaining.
FIT continued to control momentum the rest of the half. The Panthers built their advantage to as much as 16 points on a trey by Darius Wright at the 3:13 mark and eventually took a 48-36 edge into halftime.
Early second-half turnovers by FIT and a three-pointer by Anthony Gamble helped the Spartans trim the margin to seven, 53-46, with just over 16 minutes remaining. A foul by Sam Daniel on the very next possession had the Panthers reeling as they went to the bench for a media timeout.
The short break allowed coach Mims to refocus his squad, and it did just the job. The Panthers proceeded to outscore Tampa, 33-13, over the next 10 minutes of action and then take a 96-65 lead before cruising to the final buzzer and their first home victory in league play this season.
Florida Tech will look to continue its hot streak when it travels to Daytona Beach on Wednesday, Jan. 17, for an SSC showdown with Embry-Riddle at the ICI Center.
Tip-off between the Panthers and Eagles is set for 7:30 p.m. ET. Links to live coverage can be accessed at FloridaTechSports.com/live.
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