Dragan Sekelja slams home two points in FAU's 61-59 loss to North Texas. (OwlAccess.com photo)
Green with envy
North Texas ties FAU late, beats Owls in overtime 61-59.
Originally published on
BOCA RATON – Florida Atlantic had a chance to beat North Texas in regulation Saturday night at The Burrow, but the Owls failure to block out on UNT's missed 3-point attempt led to Roger Franklin's overtime-forcing lay-up and a 61-59 overtime loss at the hands of the Mean Green.
“We lost the game tonight because we missed free throws, missed some layups, made some bad decisions and we still could have won,” said Owls coach Mike Jarvis.
The Owls (10-10, 5-4 Sun Belt) struggled in overtime and yet they still had an opportunity to win or force double-overtime. FAU, which trailed by two points with 21 seconds remaining, couldn’t knock down either of its final two shot attempts.
“We beat ourselves again, that’s why I was upset,” said guard Greg Gantt. “We just gave another game away. We can’t do that.”
With 35 seconds remaining in regulation, Gantt hit a 3-pointer to put the Owls up by one point. After Moody forced a UNT turnover, Gantt was fouled and connected on one-of-two free throws to give FAU a two-point advantage.
Roger Franklin’s put-back at the buzzer off a Tony Mitchell missed 3-pointer sent the game into overtime.
The Owls struggled mightily in the first half. After scoring the first basket of the game, FAU missed its next 12 shots and UNT (8-12, 3-6) took advantage with a 15-1 run that put the Owls down 15-3 at the midway mark of the first half.
The Owls went on a 13-2 run to bring them within a reasonable deficit and trailed 23-22 at halftime.
Gantt’s 22-point performance marked his 11th consecutive 20+ point game this season. Gantt dislocated the index finger on his shooting hand in the opening minutes of the game, but after popping his finger back into place returned and played without any problems, minus some uncharacteristic missed free throws.
Stefan Moody was the only other Owl to score in double figures with 12 points.
GameBrowser: North Texas 61, FAU 59 (OT)
Moving forward: Greg Gantt, despite dislocating the index finger on his shooting hand, scored a team-high 22 points, scoring 20+ points for the 11th consecutive game ... Dragan Sekelja had another solid night. He scored 8 points and had 7 rebounds … Andre Mattison played well in an increased role necessitated by Kelvin Penn’s foul struggles. The forward scored 7 points and had 5 rebounds.
Moving backward: Pablo Bertone was held scoreless after a 14-point night Thursday against Troy … Stefan Moody, despite scoring 12 points, committed a game-high 6 turnovers … Kelvin Penn was virtually a non-factor on defense or offense. He had just one rebound, missed his only shot attempt and fouled out.
Key stat: 7 – missed free throws by FAU, including 4 by Greg Gantt
Up next: FAU begins a two-game conference road trip at Arkansas-Little Rock on Thursday at 8 p.m.