Weatherspoon leads No. 21 FAU over Western Kentucky 70-63
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By CHUCK KING
BOCA RATON, Fla. (AP) Brandon Weatherspoon scored 14 points and No. 21 Florida Atlantic defeated Western Kentucky 70-63 on Saturday to remain undefeated at home.
The victory extended FAU's winning streak to a program-record 20 games, which is now the nation's longest. The Owls' 21 victories on the season ties their Division I record set in 2010-11. Western Kentucky (11-11, 3-8 Conference USA) has lost five straight.
"We're taking some haymakers from really good teams," FAU coach Dusty May said. "Hats off to Western Kentucky. They played hard. They played determined. And we made the plays we needed to down the stretch."
Unlike their meeting two weeks before, FAU couldn't shake W. Kentucky. The Hilltoppers trailed FAU (21-1, 11-0) by three with less than two minutes remaining before the Owls closed them out.
Both teams shot 37% on the afternoon, but the Owls drained 13 three-pointers, compared to only two for the Hilltoppers.
FAU scored seven points in the final 33 seconds of the first half to take a 35-30 lead into the locker room.
Weatherspoon's three-pointer with 41 seconds remaining in the first half started the run. Johnell Davis' steal then led to a dunk by Brenen Lorient. Alijah Martin followed with another steal, and his layup barely beat the halftime horn.
"We don't panic when hard times hit," Weatherspoon said. "We stick together."
Martin scored eight while grabbing seven rebounds.
Jordan Rawls led all scorers with 17 for W. Kentucky. Dayvion McKnight and Emmanuel Akot each had 16.
"Florida Atlantic is really good," W. Kentucky coach Rick Stansbury said. "There's a reason why they've won 20 in a row."
Western Kentucky: The Hilltoppers played a second consecutive game without leading 3-point scorer Luke Frampton, who will miss the remainder of the season after tearing his ACL. . Entering the game, 7-foot-5 center Jamarion Sharp's 84 blocked shots led the nation. He added one more on Saturday afternoon.
Florida Atlantic: The Owls entered the game averaging 38.3 points per game off the bench, most in the nation. ... After draining two 3-pointers on Saturday, senior guard Michael Forrest needs two 3-pointers to tie Greg Gantt's FAU career record of 287. ... FAU played in front of a home sellout for the second consecutive game. Not traditionally known for large crowds, the Owls announced their remaining four home games have also sold out.
Western Kentucky: Hosts UTSA on Thursday night.
Florida Atlantic: Visits UAB on Thursday night.
AP college basketball: https://apnews.com/hub/college-basketball and https://apnews.com/hub/ap-top-25-college-basketball-poll and https://twitter.com/AP-Top25
Updated January 28, 2023