Cunningham Ties Season-High, USC Upstate Falls to FGCU 88-71

Cunningham Ties Season-High, USC Upstate Falls to FGCU 88-71

Box Score (.pdf)

Spartanburg, S.C. – Mike Cunningham led the USC Upstate men's basketball team offensively, tying his season-high of 26 points, but it wasn't enough to overcome a strong second half by the Florida Gulf Coast Eagles in an 88-71 loss on Homecoming Saturday afternoon from Eddie and Ann Payne Arena in the G.B. Hodge Center.

USC Upstate falls to 7-21 on the season and 2-9 in league play while Florida Gulf Coast improves to 20-8 overall and 11-0 in the conference.

A LOOK AT THE NUMBERS

  • Cunningham fell two points shy of tying his career scoring mark of 28 points after finishing the game shooting 8-of-16 from the field.
  • Cunningham set a new career-high behind the 3-point line with a 7-for-13 mark.
  • The Spartans had three players, led by Cunningham, finish the game in double-figures as Deion Holmes added 16 points and Ramel Thompkins 13.
  • Holmes pulled down a team-high eight rebounds for USC Upstate while Malik Moore added seven and Thompkins six.
  • Jure Span dished out a game-high seven assists.
  • RaySean Scott Jr. had a team-leading 21 points for the Eagles and led five players in double-digits scoring along with Brandon Goodwin (19), Zach Johnson (14), Christian Terrell (14) and Antravious Simmons (11).
  • Goodwin, Simmons and Scott Jr. all had six rebounds.
  • Goodwin and Terrell both contributed six assists.
  • The Spartans finished the game shooting 34.7 percent (25-of-72) and made 9-of-11 free throw attempts for an 81.8 percent mark.
  • USC Upstate held a 41-40 advantage in rebounds and 13-5 in second chance points.

FIRST HALF BREAKDOWN

  • The Spartans opened the game on an 11-0 run during the first 3:25 and took an 11-point advantage on a three-point play by Holmes.
  • Florida Gulf Coast scored the following four points before USC Upstate answered with seven straight and held an 18-4 advantage at the 12:32 mark on a three-point play from Avery Diggs.
  • The Spartans led by 10 or more points for a majority of the last 13 minutes of the first half with the Eagles trailing by single digits only once at 32-23 with 4:46 to go.
  • USC Upstate took its largest lead of the game at 32-14 with 7:22 remaining when Cunningham connected on a 3-pointer.
  • After FGCU cut the lead down to nine points with 4:46 left, the Spartans closed the half out on a 12-6 run with Cunningham recording six on back-to-back 3-pointers.
  • Carson Smith knocked down a 3-pointer with 56 seconds left to send USC Upstate into halftime leading 44-29.

SECOND HALF BREAKDOWN

  • The Eagles began the second half outscoring the Spartans 18-5 over the first 5:59 and cut the lead down to 49-46 at the 14:01 mark on a three-point play by Goodwin.
  • Holmes answered the next series with a layup to put USC Upstate back in front 51-46 with 13:35 left.
  • Florida Gulf Coast then went on a 12-2 run over the next four minutes to go ahead 58-53 with 8:46 to go.
  • The Spartans would get as close as three points the remainder of the half when Holmes connected on a layup the following possession to make the score 58-55.
  • The Eagles scored the next seven points and later led 69-58 at the 6:09 mark on a dunk by Johnson.
  • Florida Gulf Coast held an 11-point advantage twice during a stretch of almost two minutes with the last coming at 74-63 with 4:14 left.
  • Cunningham made three free throws at the 4:07 mark to put USC Upstate back to within eight points at 74-66.
  • The Eagles led by double-figures for the final 3:44 of the game.
  • Terrell gave FGCU its largest lead of the contest on his layup with four seconds left to put the final score at 88-71.

UP NEXT

  • The Spartans play the final two road games of their regular season next week, Feb. 15-17, at North Florida and Jacksonville.

Follow USC Upstate men's basketball on Facebook (UpstateAthletics), Twitter (@UpstateMB), Instagram (@upstatespartans), YouTube (USCUpstateAthletics) and text/e-mail alerts (www.upstatespartans.com/list-signup).

Support Those Who Support the Spartans