Central Florida 89, Tennessee Temple 85
ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) _ Harry Kennedy scored 13 of his team-high 18 points in the second half, including 7 in the last two minutes, as Central Florida held off Tennesee-Temple 89-85 Saturday night in Orlando.
To get its first win of the season, Central Florida had to fight off repeated comebacks by the tiny (enrollment-600) National Christian College Athletic Association school.
After falling behind by 13 points twice early in the game, Tennessee Temple (6-2) finished the first half with a 10-0 run and trailed only 40-39 at halftime.
Throughout the second half UCF (1-2) threatened to pull away but the Crusaders answered each Golden Knight run with one of their own. UCF could never build its lead to more than 6 points and Tennessee Temple forced three ties.
After Rahmn Thomas tied the game for the final time at 80-80 with a layup with 1:49 left in the game, the Crusaders missed a chance to take the lead when Thomas missed the free throw that would have made it a 3-point play.
The Knights then took the lead 82-80 for good when Kennedy connected on a turn-around jumper with 1:24 to play.
Kennedy then sealed the UCF victory by sinking five free throws in the final 58 seconds.
UCF’s Cory Perry scored 16 points while Mario Lovett added 14 points, 12 rebounds and 3 steals. Thomas led the Crusaders with 23 points and 8 rebounds while Scott Brewer added 21 points and 7 assists.