Wade injured as ODU loses close one against FIU

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NORFOLK (ODU) — Malik Curry paced five Monarchs in double-figures with 18 points, but the Old Dominion men’s basketball team (7-13, 3-4 C-USA) fell short to FIU (14-6, 5-2 C-USA) by an 83-80 score on Thursday night at Chartway Arena. Florida International went 15-34 (44.1%) from three-point range for the contest.

With 14:17 to play, ODU led 55-46, only before the Panthers answered on a 22-10 run to claim a 68-65 advantage with 6:02 left. Curry later cut the Monarchs deficit to one, 79-78, with 31 second remaining in regulation. Trejon Jacob went down and connected on both if his free-throws, extending FIU’s lead back to three, 81-78, at the 19-second mark. Curry answered back with a layup, again making it a one-point ballgame, 81-80, with 13 seconds left to play.

Antonio Daye Jr. drained both of his attempts from the charity stripe, stretching Florida international’s lead back to three (83-80) with just 11 seconds remaining. A.J. Oliver II got a look from three-point range, but the attempt was off, as the Panthers escaped Norfolk with a three-point victory on Thursday night.

“We didn’t lose that game, FIU beat us,” said ODU head coach Jeff Jones. “I guess what I am trying to say by phrasing it that way is I thought we played pretty well. I know dang well that we played very hard and really gutted it out. FIU just played better; they made big shots, they made tough shots.”

Along with Curry’s team-high 18 points, he finished with five assists, three rebounds and one steal. Kalu Ezikpe turned in a career-high 15 points, to go along with seven rebounds, two steals and one block in 27 minutes of work.

Joe Reece finished with career-highs for points (14) and rebounds (7). Oliver II also recorded 14 points to compliment three rebounds and one steal. Also in double-figures for Old Dominion was Xavier Green, who went for 11 points, eight rebounds, seven assists and one steal.

The Panthers claimed a 39-35 lead at the half after shooting 8-21 from deep. The Monarchs were led by Ezikpe’s 11 points and five rebounds. Curry chipped in nine points, while Reece followed with six points and four boards. ODU held a 22-10 advantage for points in the paint in the opening 20 minutes.

In the first half, forward Jason Wade left the game with a right knee injury and was scheduled to have an MRI with results coming on Friday.

ODU hosts Florida Atlantic on Saturday.

Copyright 2020 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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