Categorized | MTSU Basketball

MTSU tops FIU 65-62

Posted on 09 January 2015 by Allen


Middle Tennessee showed up with intensity and outplayed FIU on both ends of the floor in a 65-52 victory over FIU Thursday night at the Murphy Center. The Blue Raider’s bench played a huge role, outscoring the Panthers 35-2, as Middle Tennessee (8-7, 1-1 C-USA) claimed its first conference win of the season.

“We got better when we went to the bench and I just thought we had more guys play better,” Head Coach Kermit Davis said. It was a good team effort and our team got better tonight.”

Edward Simpson poured in a career-high 14 points and knocked down four three-pointers to lead MT, while Reggie Upshaw reached double figures with 11 points and six rebounds.

Jacquez Rozier stuffed the stat sheet with 10 points, five boards, three assists, three steals and two blocks.

The Blue Raiders ou-tscored FIU 19-5 over a span of eight minutes in the first half, as the Blue Raiders went up as much as 14. Eight different Blue Raiders reached the scoring column, while Simpson paced MT with eight points after 20 minutes.

MT shot 54 percent (14-of-26) from the field and hit four treys on its way to a 35-22 lead at halftime.

The Blue Raiders continued the hot shooting in the second half, highlighted by a pair of Simpson three-pointers that built the largest lead of the contest at 54-30 with 9:17 left in regulation.

“I was proud of our players,” Davis said. “We needed a win really bad to get back 1-1 with the league. We’re going to really focus on the 32-33 minutes of positive play from tonight.”
Dennis Mavin scored 31 points for the Panthers, which became the most MT has given up to an individual this season, but the Panthers never got within 12 down the stretch.

Middle Tennessee out-rebounded FIU (8-7, 1-1 C-USA) by seven and remained undefeated (8-0) when scoring at least 60 points in a game this season.

The Blue Raiders continue league play by hosting Florida Atlantic (7-6, 0-2 C-USA) on Saturday night. Tip is scheduled for 7 p.m. inside Murphy Center.
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