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11/18/2012 5:54 PM EST
Western Michigan beats USF 58-53
WESTRN MICHIGAN 58, SOUTH FLORIDA 53
By MARK DIDTLER
TAMPA, Fla. (AP) -- Brandon Pokley scored 15 points, Darius Paul
had 14, and Western Michigan beat South Florida 58-53 on Sunday.
The victory gave Broncos' coach Steve Hawkins his 300th career
win. Nate Hutcheson added 11 for Western Michigan (4-1).
"I truly did not know it until it happened ... when I started I
was skinny and had hair," the bald-headed Hawkins said. "The
most important thing, we've got a lot of freshmen, and to get
the win, to reward the kids for a great effort was the most
South Florida (2-2) got 16 points from Shaun Noriega. Toarlyn
Fitzpatrick chipped in 14 points, while Anthony Collins had 12
"We've got to be more consistent," Noriega said. "That's been a
big issue for us."
Both teams won games Friday and Saturday in the three-day South
Jared Klein converted a 3-pointer to give Western Michigan a
55-50 lead with three minutes to go. Jawanza Poland's
three-point play cut the USF deficit to 55-53 with just two
under minutes remaining, then Hutcheson's late three-point play
made it 58-53.
South Florida grabbed a 46-45 lead when Noriega made a 3-pointer
and added a three-point play midway through the second half.
"We've got to become a better team at finishing," South Florida
coach Stan Heath said. "We were very good at that in the past."
Paul connected on a 3-pointer as Western Michigan went ahead
43-38 with 13 1-2 minutes left.
Fitzpatrick had 12 points to help South Florida take a 36-34
halftime lead. The senior forward made his fourth 3-pointer of
the half and Zach LeDay had a slam to put the Bulls ahead 32-25
three minutes before the break.
"We had a chance to really buckle when South Florida took a
seven-point lead there," Hawkins said. "I thought that was the
critical point in the game."
Pokley hit a pair of long-range jumpers as Western Michigan took
an early 10-5 lead. South Florida, keyed by three 3-pointers by
Fitzpatrick, went ahead 13-12 six minutes into the game.
Western Michigan outrebounded USF 39-26.
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