ORLANDO, Fla. — Tulsa’s comeback bid fell short Sunday afternoon as the Golden Hurricane could not overcome a 19-point second half deficit, falling to the University of Central Florida 83-75.
Down 76-65 with 41 seconds remaining, TU’s Martins Igbanu made a layup off of an assist from Isaiah Hill, and on the following inbounds play Lawson Korita stole the ball and made a layup with 0:34 left on the clock. After two UCF free throws, Igbanu made another layup which was followed by an Isaiah Hill steal and a layup cutting the Knights’ lead to four points, 79-75.
But UCF closed the game by making four straight free throws, sending TU to its second straight loss.
Igbanu scored a career-high 30 points — 20 of which came in the second half.
Korita also scored in double-figures with 12 points, while Darien Jackson and Jeriah Horne both had nine points.
TU (15-8, 7-3 AAC) was without leading scorer scorer Brandon Rachal, who did not play because of an injury.
With the Hurricane trailing 70-52, Korita started a 7-0 run with 5:16 left. The run was capped by a Horne 3-pointer to cut the lead to 11 points at 70-59 with 4:15 remaining.
Darin Green Jr. led UCF with a season-high 26 points, hitting 6-of-7 3-pointers. Ceasar DeJesus added 18 points for UCF (13-10, 4-7).
TU hosts East Carolina at 7 p.m. Wednesday at the Reynolds Center.