FORT MYERS, Fla. – The FGCU men’s basketball team lost to the Buccaneers of East Tennessee State 56-47 Thursday night in front of 1,859 fans at Alico Arena. The Eagles record falls to 7-16 overall and 4-10 in the A-Sun, while the Bucs improve to 12-2 overall and 8-5 in the conference.
The Eagles jumped out to an 8-0 lead just 2:14 into the game, but the scoring would become scarce shortly thereafter. The Blue and Green held ETSU to just 1 point through the first 9:43 (10-1).
The Bucs offense came alive near the midway point of the first half, sparked by an Adam Sollazo dunk with 10:17 to play in the period. ETSU would score nine straight points to tie the game at 10 just 1:05 later.
Derrick O’Neil (Moreno Valley, Calif.) completed a conventional three-point play to put the Eagles ahead 24-18 with 3:37 left in the half. The Bucs would go on an 8-0 run to end the half, giving ETSU a 26-24 lead at intermission.
Anthony Banks (Lantana, Fla.) opened the scoring with a layup just 45 seconds into the second half, tying the game at 26. ETSU would quickly regain and maintain the lead until a pair of Eddie Murray (North Fort Myers, Fla.) free throws put the Eagles in front 32-31 with 15:09 remaining.
The Bucs scored the next five points to regain the lead (36-32) with 13:55 to play. Hunter Miller (Nashville, Tenn.) knocked down a jumper 1:15 later to tie the game at 36.
A Reed Baker (Naples, Fla.) three with 9:20 remaining tied the game at 39. ETSU would then go on a 13-1 run, taking a 52-40 lead with 4:54 on the clock. The Bucs would go on to win 56-47.
Banks led the team with eight points, while three other Eagles finished with seven. O’Neil led FGCU with six rebounds.
Brown scored a game-high 17 points for ETSU and grabbed a game-high seven boards. Tommy Hubbard added 10 points for the Bucs.
The Eagles return to Alico Arena on Saturday, February 6, when they take on the Camels of Campbell University as part of another Eagle hoops doubleheader. The men take to the court first with tip-off scheduled for 5:15 p.m. against Campbell, with the women’s game to follow 30 minutes after the conclusion of the men’s.