Oral Roberts 66, Fla. International 55

Saturday, December 22nd 2001, 12:00 am
By: News On 6

CAROLINA, Puerto Rico (AP) _ Tyrone Tiggs and Luke Spencer-Gardner each scored 13 points, and Oral Roberts beat turnover-plagued Florida International 66-55 Saturday for third place at the Carolina Shootout.

All eight players who saw action scored for Oral Roberts (5-8), which trailed only once. Reggie Borges had 12 points and three other players had at least seven.

Florida International (5-6), which has lost five of its last six games, had 23 turnovers _ 18 before halftime. Rodrigo Viegas was the only Golden Panther scoring in double figures with 17 points.

Tiggs had two steals and two baskets in a 10-second span to give Oral Roberts an 11-4 lead. After converting the first steal into layup, Tiggs stole the inbound pass for another quick basket.

The Golden Eagles stretched the lead to 22-9 after Markius Barnes and Borges converted free throws for three-point plays on consecutive possessions.

Florida International led only after Nikola Novakovic scored the opening basket 40 seconds into the game. Barnes then scored and, following a foul against Novakovic, Spencer-Gardner made a 17-footer to put the Golden Eagles ahead to stay.

After cutting the gap to 32-27 at halftime, Florida International started the second half by going more than five minutes without making a field goal.

A putback by Richie Myers with 15:52 left put Oral Roberts ahead 40-28. Fab Fisher followed with a 3-pointer for the first FIU field goal of the second half.

Kendrick Moore converted a three-point play for Oral Roberts after Fisher's basket and its lead didn't drop under 10 points again.