Cajuns Knock Off Central Florida 61-60
Louisiana's Ragin' Cajuns returned home after a two game road trip and got their most impressive win of the season Wednesday night, defeating Central Florida 61-60 at the Cajundome.
The Cajuns (6-8) opened up a seven point lead after UCF had an early 4-3 lead and didn't relinquish the lead in the first half. Junior Kadeem Coleby scored eight of the first nine Cajuns points. The game was nip and tuck for a good part of the first half with the Cajuns struggling to score against a UCF zone defense. But senior David Perez hit three consecutive triples to help the Cajuns open things up.
Marcus Jordan, who paced the Knights (8-3) with 17 points, hit a triple to cut the Cajuns lead to one point, 29-28 at the break.
UCF scored the first basket of the second half to lead 30-29, but the Cajuns went on an 8-0 run and would never trail again. The Cajuns opened up as much as a 13 point lead, 51-38 with just under six minutes left on Perez' fourth triple of the game, but UCF came back to make it a single digit lead at the final media timeout. The Knights continued to chip away and got as close as two points in the final minute, but Raymone Andrews and Perez each hit free throws to make it a four point game. A meaningless three pointer at the buzzer led to the final margin.
Coleby led the Cajuns with 20 points and nine rebounds. Perez added 13, and J. J. Thomas, in his first game back after a knee injury, scored twelve points in eighteen minutes of action.
Jordan had 17 points to lead the Knights, whose only other losses were at Florida State and to nationally-ranked Harvard. UCF defeated defending national champion UCONN earlier in the season. Tristan Spurlock and Keith Clanton added 13 points each for UCF, who outrebounded the Cajuns 35-30.
The Cajuns will now take a break for the Christmas holidays before opening up Sun Belt Conference play on Saturday, December 31st against pre-season favorite Florida Atlantic. Gametime at the Cajundome will be at 4:15 as part of a doubleheader with the Cajun women. Both games will be heard on espn1420 and espn1420.com.