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Blue Raiders defeat Eagles 81-76

On Saturday, Dec. 2, the 6-3 FGCU Eagles hosted the 5-1 Middle Tennessee Blue Raiders at Alico Arena.

In their last matchup, the Blue Raiders topped the Eagles 85-72.

As the ball tipped off on Saturday night, the Eagles went on a 9-0, starting from Christian Carlyle’s layup.

Based off the injury leading to Ricky Doyle’s absence, the Eagles’ offense suddenly slowed down after their dominating start midway through the first.

At just under eight minutes, Middle Tennessee took its first lead of the game, 20-19.

Late in the first half, FGCU regained the lead 31-29 but lost it as the first half ended 34-31 in favor of the Blue Raiders.

Considering the 47-29 halftime score of the teams’ first meeting, the Eagles seemed like they were holding their own.

Middle Tennessee started off the second half with a jump shot made by Nick King.

Following the King basket, the Blue Raiders went on a 9-2 run ended by a Brandon Goodwin three-pointer. With 7:40 to go, the score was 59-44 with Middle Tennessee in the lead.

Another Brandon Goodwin three-pointer sparked the Eagles to go on a run of their own, cutting the Blue Raider’s lead to two with just five minutes to play.

With under a minute left, Goodwin hit two free throws, making it a 75-74 game favoring the visitors. Following a few free throws and a foul by the Blue Raiders, Goodwin was sent to the line for three shots and a chance to tie the game.

Goodwin hit two of three, and the Blue Raiders went on to defeat the Eagles 81-76 for the second time this year.

The Eagles were led in scoring by Brandon Goodwin who tallied 26 points along with six rebounds. Nick King led the Blue Raiders with 32 points.

The Eagles will host the FAU Owls on Tuesday, Dec. 5 at Alico Arena at 7:30 p.m.

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