Shaquille Harrison scored 17 points, leading four players in double figures, to spark a big second half run and lead Tulsa past FIU, 77-65, Saturday afternoon at U.S. Century Bank Arena.
The Golden Hurricane (15-12, 10-3 C-USA) outscored FIU 49-30 in the second period, shooting 54 percent (13-of-24) after halftime. Brandon Swannegan tallied a career-high 11 points, Tim Peete scored 12 points, and James Woodard added 11 points. Swannegan and Rashad Smith each grabbed nine rebounds to lead the Hurricane. Harrison added five assists and five steals. Tymell Murphy scored 19 points and Dennis Mavin scored 18 points to lead the Panthers (13-15, 5-8 C-USA).
Tulsa erased a 35-28 halftime deficit with a 10-1 run to open the second half and take a 38-36 lead. The Hurricane extended its run out to 18-5, running its lead to six points, 46-40, with 12:31 remaining. TU extended its run to 23-10, leading 51-47, at the 9:38 mark.
FIU cut the lead to 51-49, but the Golden Hurricane responded with six straight points to gain an eight-point advantage, 57-49, with 6:42 to play. FIU pulled as close as 57-53 with 5:49 remaining on a pair of free throws, but Tulsa held the home team without a field goal for 4:49. TU led 68-57 when Mavin made a 3-pointer with 1:35 left to make the score 68-60. TU outscored the Panthers 9-5 the remainder of the game for the 77-65 final margin.
TU shot 46 percent (21-of-46) for the game, while holding FIU to a .345 (19-of-55) field goal percentage. TU totaled 11 steals and seven blocks – four by Smith and three by Swannegan – along with nine assists and 18 turnovers. The Hurricane scored 21 points off 17 FIU turnovers, and the TU bench put up 27 points.
In a slow start on both ends of the floor, Tulsa led 3-0 with 15:58 left in the half, and extended its lead to 10-4 with 12:13 to play. FIU tied the score at 12-12, but the Hurricane got a layup by Woodard and a pair of free throws to move out to a 16-12 lead.
The Panthers took its first lead, 17-16, on a layup by Cody Mann, and led 22-18 with 5:09 left in the half. TU pulled within 24-24, but FIU ended the half on an 11-5 run, scoring the last five points of the half, to take a 35-28 lead into the break.
The Golden Hurricane travels for a key C-USA contest at UTEP on Thursday.