Although the FGCU women's basketball team has coined the phrase '#RainingThrees', it was the men's squad, borrowing the hashtag, that poured in a plethora of long-range shots in the double header at Alico Arena on Saturday evening. After the FGCU women took down USC Upstate 54-43 in the opener, Dunk City defeated the Spartans, 85-56, behind their best three point shooting effort of the season (61.9%).
It was just one of those kinda nights in Fort Myers. Not only were FGCU's typical shapshooters Filip Cvjeticanin (9 points) and Christian Terrell (18 points) converting from outside, but a multitude of other Eagles made it rain from distance as well. Rayjon Tucker recorded his sixth triple of the season and Reggie Reid drained his 10th of the year.
But the most impressive three point performance came from Zach Johnson. Not known for his outside shooting, the Miami, Fla. product shot 3/3 from beyond the arc en route to 18 points. Paired with his uncanny ability to penetrate the lane and then either finish at the rim or dish the rock, the emergence of consistent outside shooting would put Johnson's defenders in a tough spot.
A three from the redshirt freshman with 11:29 remaining in the first half capped a 15-0 run by the Eagles that put them up 19-8. The Eagles never looked back, taking advantage of Michael Buchanan's foul trouble to score 18 first-half points in the paint and take a 43-17 lead into the lockerroom.
Contrary to Thursday night, Florida Gulf Coast did not lift the foot off the gas pedal and continued their domination into the 2nd half. And although the Eagles went on brief shooting droughts from the field, they were able to get to the charity stripe. Making those free throws, however, was a different story. FGCU converted 12/19 (63.2%) from the line, right below their season mark of 64.7% (294th in the nation).
The Eagles won their sixth game in a row to move to 3-0 in Atlantic Sun play. They now sit in 2nd place in the conference standings, right behind North Florida (15-6, 4-0), and head to Kennesaw State on Thursday to battle the Owls.
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North Florida 93 - 78 Kennesaw State
The Owls held a 14 point lead with around six minutes remaining in the first half, but they ould not hang on to secure the upset bid. Foul trouble plagued the Kennesaw State frontcourt and UNF's three point shooting, lead by Beau Beech (33 points, 7/10 3-PT FGs), was eventually too much to handle. The Ospreys move to 4-0 in A-Sun play and travel to USC Upstate on Thursday. Kennesaw State falls to 0-2 in conference and will host FGCU on Thursday.
Jacksonville 76 - 73 Lipscomb
Double-doubles from J.R. Holder (11 points, 10 rebounds) and Josh Adeyeye (24 points, 11 rebounds) powered Jacksonville to their second Atlantic Sun victory. The Dolphins will now travel north to battle NJIT. Lipscomb has now dropped eight in a row and will look for their first Atlantic Sun win of the season as they host Stetson on Thursday.
NJIT 71 - 59 Stetson
The Highlanders won their first Atlantic Sun game behind 21 points from Tim Coleman and a double-double from Damon Lynn (15 points, 10 rebounds). They'll host Jacksonville next week while the Hatters (4-16, 0-3) will travel to Lipscomb.