Upstate Men's Basketball Headed to A-Sun Finals Sunday

March 5, 2015 at 11:07 pm
USC Upstate

Ty Greene

Fort Myers, Fla.Ty Greene scored 20 points and USC Upstate advanced to the Atlantic Sun Tournament finals for the first time in school history following a 63-62 victory over Florida Gulf Coast Thursday from Alico Arena.

Greene hit four three-pointers to move into a tie with Jay Free (2004-05) for the most three-pointers in a season in school history with 94.

ShunQuez Stephens tied a career-high with 15 points, which included a three-pointer to put the Spartans ahead 59-56 with 3:15 remaining.

USC Upstate

ShunQuez Stephens

Consecutive baskets by Demetris Morant and Jamail Jones gave Florida Gulf Coast a 60-59 lead with 54 seconds left, but Michael Buchanan answered on the ensuing Upstate possession with a layup to put the Spartans ahead by one.

Following a missed three-pointer by Brett Comer, Greene hit two free throws to push the Upstate lead to three with five seconds remaining. Greene was called for a foul on the next play on a three-point attempt by Bernard Thompson with one second left. Thompson made the first two and missed the third, and Fred Miller secured his career-best 10th rebound of the game as time expired.

The victory is Upstate’s ninth road win of the year, which marks the most true road wins for a USC Upstate team since the 1990-91 team finished the season with 11. It’s also the first win at Alico Arena by USc Upstate since 2012.

Thompson finished with 25 points and hit five three-pointers off the bench. Comer added 15 points and a game-high seven assists.

USC Upstate built a 10-0 lead just over five minutes into the first half as Florida Gulf Coast missed its first eight shots. Comer scored the next five points to ignite a 23-7 run and put the Eagles ahead by six with 5:37 remaining.

Greene scored the next five points for USC Upstate and Tristan Thomas followed with a three-pointer from the corner to push the Spartans ahead 25-23 with just under three minutes before halftime.

Jones tied the score with a basket in the lane at the 2:07 mark, but Josh Cuthbertson regained the lead for Upstate with a layup just before the buzzer to put the Spartans ahead 27-25 at halftime.

Upstate will face top-seeded North Florida Sunday at 2:30 p.m. from the UNF Arena in the tournament championship game on ESPN2. Upstate handed North Florida its only two losses in league play this season.