ORLANDO, Fla. (WKRC) – Drew McDonald was just off a double-double, but the Northern Kentucky University men's basketball team suffered its first loss of the season on Saturday night, falling to UCF by a final score of 66-53. UCF moves to 5-1 on the year, while NKU is now 6-1.
McDonald led all scorers with 22 points. He also added eight rebounds and two assists.
Tyler Sharpe tallied 13 points, five rebounds and three assists.
Dantez Walton recorded 11 points and five rebounds.
UCF started the second half on a 23-6 run to go ahead 57-38, and the deficit was too much to overcome for the Norse.
FIRST HALF SUMMARY
The first half was tightly-contested, as it featured six ties and four lead changes.
UCF's largest lead of the half was six points, and the Knights took a narrow 34-32 lead into halftime.
McDonald led all scorers with 13 points. He shot 4-of-7 from the floor, including 3-of-5 from beyond the arc. He also added four rebounds and two assists.
Walton tallied nine points on 3-of-5 shooting, which included a 2-of-3 mark from the three-point line.
As a team, the Norse shot 11-of-29 (37.9 percent) on field goals and 6-of-16 (37.5 percent) on three-point attempts.
NKU held UCF to 9-of-24 (37.5 percent) shooting, including 3-of-8 (37.5 percent) on shots from behind the three-point line.
The Norse only turned the ball over three times.
NKU also spaced the floor and moved the ball well, as the team had 10 assists on its 11 made field goals.
SECOND HALF SUMMARY
UCF started the half shooting 5-of-6 from the floor to go ahead 43-34. The Knights extended their lead to 19 points with 10:16 to play.
The Norse used a 7-1 run to get within 12 points at 61-49 with 4:37 remaining.
UCF went on to win by a final score of 66-53.
The Knights shot 13-of-26 (50 percent) from the floor, and NKU went 8-of-30 (26.7 percent).
The Norse committed just three turnovers.
NKU went 19-of-59 (32.2 percent) on field goals during the game.
UCF shot 22-of-50 (44 percent) from the floor.
The Norse took good care of the ball throughout the game, as the team only turned the ball over six times. This is the second-straight game NKU has committed just six miscues after doing so against Coastal Carolina in the finale of the KEMI Northern Kentucky Basketball Classic.
NKU heads to Morehead State on Tuesday, Nov. 27. Tipoff is scheduled for 7:30 p.m., and the game will be broadcast on ESPN
Information provided by NKU Athletics.