ORLANDO - UCF guard B.J. Taylor banked in a driving layup with 2.8 seconds remaining to break a tie and lift the Knights to a 56-54 win over the University of Houston Men's Basketball program inside CFE Arena on Sunday afternoon.
In a game that went back and forth for 40 minutes, neither team was able to build a double-digit advantage with the lead changing 22 times.
After Houston built a 33-32 halftime lead, UCF opened the second half on a 15-6 run and held a 47-39 advantage on Brandon Goodwin's layup at the 12:19 mark. However, the Cougars used a 15-4 run of their own over the next 3:09 to take a 52-51 lead on sophomore forward Danrad Knowles' layup with 9:10 left.
Both teams went into an offensive slump from there, scoring a combined five points but battling to a 54-54 tie with 2:26 remaining after Houston junior forward Devonta Pollard snared an offensive rebound and dunked it.
With 1:00 left and the score still tied at 54-54, UCF threw the ball into the backcourt, giving the Cougars a chance to take the lead. However, Houston committed its own giveaway with 32 ticks left on the game clock, setting the stage for Taylor's try with the shot clock off.
It was the second heartbreaking loss to the Knights this season. On Jan. 6, Goodwin hit a game-tying 3-pointer at the end of regulation to force overtime and hit another trey at the end of overtime to lead the Knights to a 79-78 win.
Pollard led the Cougars with 14 points off the bench on 7-of-11 shooting and added seven rebounds with an assists, blocked shot and steal. Junior guard LeRon Barnes played all 40 minutes and finished with 12 points and four rebounds, while Knowles led Houston with eight rebounds.
UCF forward Staphon Blair and Goodwin tied for team-high honors with 14 points apiece, while forward Kasey Wilson added13 points and a team-high six rebounds.
Following Sunday's game, the Cougars wrap up their Florida road swing when they face USF at 6 p.m. (CST), Tuesday, inside the Sun Dome in Tampa, Fla.
Fans can hear Tuesday's game live on KPRC 950 AM with Matt Thomas calling the action. The pregame show begins at 5:45 p.m. (CST), Tuesday.
Fans also can hear the radio broadcast online by visiting UHCougars.com and following the appropriate links to Houston All-Access or by clicking here. A Houston All-Access subscription is required to listen to the game online.
Fans can watch Tuesday's game live on ESPNews with Eamon McAnaney calling the play-by-play action and Malcolm Huckaby providing analysis. Fans also can watch the game online by visiting WatchESPN.com and following the appropriate links or by clicking here.
BUY TICKETS NOW
Fans have a variety of tickets options to accommodate any budget. Group tickets, mini-plans and single-game tickets also are on sale now. For complete tickets information, fans can visit uhcougars.com/mbbtickets and follow the appropriate links or by clicking here.
To purchase tickets, fans can call 713-GO-COOGS (462-6647) or visit the Athletics Ticket Office from 10 a.m., to 5:30 p.m., Monday through Friday. To purchase tickets in person, fans can visit the Athletics Ticket Office located on the northeast corner of TDECU Stadium, just outside of Gate 1 off Cullen Boulevard. Parking is available in the TDECU Stadium parking garage with the first 30 minutes free of charge.
All UH main campus students are admitted FREE to regular-season Men's Basketball home games with a valid student ID.
Fans also have a choice of a pair of mini plans when choosing their ticket options. With the Conference Pack, fans can purchase tickets to each of the Cougars' nine American Athletic Conference home games inside Hofheinz Pavilion, starting at only $8 per game in the Reserved 3 section.
Fans can choose the 3-Point Pack and pick any three of the Cougars' 17 regular-season home games with prices starting as low as $9 per game in the Reserved 3 section.
Tickets for groups of 10 or more can be purchased for as low as $9 per ticket in Reserved 3 (Section 101-102, 115-116, 126-128) for 17 regular-season home games inside Hofheinz Pavilion. Groups of 10 or more can buy tickets for only $14 per ticket in the Reserved 2 (Sections 103-104, 109-111, 117-119 and 124-125), while Reserved 3 seats (Section 105-108, 120-123) are available at $19 per ticket.
The ticket cost per person falls even more for groups of 25 or more. Group administrators are encouraged to call or visit the Athletics Ticket Office soon to secure their seats.
For a map of Hofheinz Pavilion group seating sections and prices, fans can click here. Fans can purchase group tickets online by visiting UHCougars.com and following the appropriate links or by clicking here, 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
Single-game tickets can be purchased for as low as $10 per game in the Reserved 3 section inside Hofheinz Pavilion. Fans can buy single-tickets in Reserved 2 for only $15 with tickets in Reserved 1 going for $20 per game.
Fans can receive the latest news and notes by following @UHCougarMBK on Twitter. Fans also can discuss the latest Houston Men's Basketball news and notes on the team's Facebook page by clicking LIKE at HoustonCougarMensHoops.