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December 1, 2013

Murphy Leads in Win

Three Panthers scored in double-figures as the FIU men's basketball team (7-3) edged the Georgia State Panthers (2-5), 61-60, stopping GSU's last-second attempt to preserve a one-point victory on Saturday night from Lime Court at U.S. Century Bank Arena.

Senior Tymell Murphy scored 23 points on 9-of-12 shooting for his sixth double-double of the season and for the 14th time of his career. It's the 38th time the Brooklyn, N.Y., native has scored double-digit points and is his third-straight, 20-point game. Redshirt senior Rakeem Buckles had a career-night on the boards, finishing with 17 rebounds. Redshirt junior Dennis Mavin scored a season-high 14 points, going 5-of-16 from the floor and 3-of-4 from the charity stripe, and freshman Jason Boswell added an additional 11 points.

FIU started the game on a 7-0 run, with Murphy draining a trey at the 18:21 mark. The shot extends FIU's streak to 155-straight games with a successful 3-pointer, dating back to Dec. 20, 2008. Boswell then drove to the basket for two, forcing Georgia State to call an early timeout. Murphy hit his second 3-pointer of the game two minutes later to give FIU its then-largest lead, 10-2. With 12:17 to play, Georgia State drove to the basket for a layup, which was batted into the court-side cabanas by Buckles. Following a Georgia State trey to pull the Panthers within 2 points, 15-13, Boswell drained a jumper just before the shot clock sounded to preserve a 4-point, 17-13, lead. Georgia State got its first lead of the game with 1:33 to play in the half, as the two teams went into the half knotted at 27-all, courtesy of a Murphy layup with 12 seconds remaining.

Murphy lead all scorers in the first with 15 points, shooting 6-of-8 from the floor and going a perfect 2-of-2 from beyond the arc. Buckles registered a team-high three blocks and six rebounds, while also recording a steal. FIU shot 44 percent in the first half, going 11-of-25 and beat Georgia State on the boards, 22-14.

Boswell scored a quick five points for the Panthers to open the second half with a trey and transition dunk, to pull FIU within two points, 32-32, with 16:37 remaining in the game. With 12:21 to play, Mavin broke coast-to-coast in transition for a layup, which was tipped in by Boswell, to bring FIU within one, 41-40. Mavin completed a three-point play with 9:48 to go, cutting the Panther's deficit to two points, 45-43. Junior Marco Porcher Jimenez tipped a Buckles layup in at the 4:45 mark to cut Georgia State's lead to five points, 55-50. Following a missed trey by Mavin, Murphy grabbed the rebound and put the Panthers within three, 55-52, with just over three minutes to play. As time expired on the shot clock, Mavin completed his second, three-point play of the half to give FIU its first lead since the first half, 59-58, with just over a minute remaining. A Buckles layup on the following possession gave the Panthers a three-point lead and forced a Georgia State timeout. The Panthers defense stopped Georgia State on the final play of the game, as Ryan Harrow tried a fade away jumper that landed in Murphy's arms.

FIU finished the game shooting 45.5 percent on 25-of-55 shooting, while shooting just under 60 percent from the line, converting 7-of-12 chances. The Panthers largest lead was 11 points, which came in the first half (14-3, 14:34 remaining). FIU dominated Georgia State on the boards, 49-27 and held the GSU to just 7-of-18 from beyond the arc.

The Panthers are back in action on Dec. 3, hosting Nova Southeastern. Tipoff is set for 7:00 p.m. from Lime Court at U.S. Century Bank Arena.


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