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Men's basketball: FIU-UALR game report, live blog, Phil Taylor activated

Right before tonight's game Phil Taylor was activated.


The FIU men's basketball team faces the University of Arkansas at Little Rock, Thursday night at U.S. Century Bank Arena. The game is set for a 7 p.m. start.

The live blog will start a few minutes before the game begins.

The Golden Panthers are coming off two consecutive road losses against two of the top teams in the SBC, Denver 79-70 (OT) and North Texas 87-77.

FIU was competitive in both games, losing on late rallies. The Panthers narrowly missed a chance to upset Denver (9-9, 5-0 SBC), failing to convert multiple late-game free-throw opportunities.

The Panthers were ahead for much of the game till late in the second-half when the Pioneers took a 59-58 lead. FIU stayed on the attack, battling back to send the game to overtime. Denver outscored FIU in the extra-period 14-5, picking up its fifth SBC win.

"We played a good basketball game with the exception of converting from the foul-line," FIU coach Isiah Thomas said. "If we can get better from the foul-line those [games] can become wins."

The Panthers shot 20 of 36 from the free-throw line. FIU ranks seventh in the SBC in free-throw percentage.

Junior guard DeJuan Wright had a team-high 21 points against North Texas and senior guard Phil Gary had a team-high 22 points against Denver.

With 11 games to play before the conference tournament, FIU is hoping to end its two-game conference skid against UALR.

The Panthers (8-9, 3-2 SBC) are second in the East Division of the SBC standings, trailing rival FAU (14-6, 6-0 SBC).

"We are a couple of free-throw shots away and a couple of turnovers away from being undefeated in the conference," Thomas said.

The Trojans (11-9, 3-2 SBC) are on a three-game winning streak, beating Troy, ULM and ULL.

UALR is lead by senior guard Solomon Bozeman, who is averaging a team-high 15.7 points a game and is shooting 48 percent from three-point land. Bozeman dropped 26 points on ULM last week.

"It's going to be tough game for us. They shoot the three-ball well," Thomas said. "We have to do a good job of contesting the three-point shot."

The Trojans are shooting 43 percent from three-point range.






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