Pat Swilling Jr. poured in 19 points and Shaquille Harrison added 14 points to lead Tulsa, but the Golden Hurricane came up short at UCF on Saturday, falling 83-75 at UCF Arena.
Swilling and Harrison both matched their season-high scoring totals for the Golden Hurricane, which fell to 14-13 overall and 6-7 in Conference USA play. Swilling connected on five 3-pointers in the contest, while Harrison also tallied five assists and four steals. James Woodard added 10 points for TU. Isaiah Sykes and Tristan Spurlock scored 22 and 19 points, respectively, to lead the Knights (18-9, 8-5 C-USA).
Tulsa led by one point, 36-35, at halftime, but UCF held a 48-39 scoring advantage in the second half. The Hurricane shot 43 percent from the field (26-for-60), made eight 3-pointers, and made 15 of its 19 free-throw attempts. UCF shot 42 percent from the field (22-for-52) and also made eight 3's, but made 31-of-42 free throws.
On the first possession of the second half, Harrison made a layup to give the Hurricane a three-point lead. UCF, however, used a 7-0 spurt to move ahead for good, 42-38. Tulsa trailed by three points, 50-47, with 12:04 remaining, but the Knights went on a 10-0 run to lead 60-47 at the 9:49 mark.
The Hurricane kept the score in range, and finally pulled the deficit to fewer than eight points when Swilling knocked down a trey with 4:02 on the clock to cut the deficit to 72-66. TU got as close as four points with 0:42 left on the clock after a pair of free throws by D'Andre Wright. UCF then made four of its final six free throws to ice the win.
The Golden Hurricane returns to action Saturday when it plays host to Tulane at 3 p.m. at the Donald W. Reynolds Center.