FNU falls in final game of 2023 calendar year

FNU falls in final game of 2023 calendar year graphic.
FNU falls in final game of 2023 calendar year. (Dec. 20, 2023)

(Box Score)

HIALEAH, Fla. (Dec. 20, 2023) – Florida National University’s men’s basketball team (3-10) adds another close loss to its 2023 total. The Conquistadors fell at home to the Southeastern University Fire (8-5) 74-63. The Fire came into Bucky Dent Park on Dec. 20 and executed a fast-paced win on the road, despite posting 21 turnovers. This is SEU’s fifth straight win over FNU going back to January 2015. The Conquistadors’ lone win against the Fire was an 87-73 home victory on December 16, 2014. 

In the first half, FNU got off to a slow start, trailing 11-5 after five minutes of play. But the Conquistadors found their bearings and a layup from Ray Daniel Parrish in the final six minutes of the frame cut the Fire’s lead to five. SEU ended the half up 38-33 thanks to a 19-rebound performance, including three offensive boards. Gary Adams was a huge part of FNU’s run midway through the half, posting 16 points in 18 minutes on the court. Parrish was solid on both sides of the ball with 10 points, three rebounds and two assists. 

The Fire took control of the game in the second thanks to an excellent performance on the glass with 24 rebounds. The Fire did give up 10 costly turnovers, but FNU had trouble finding the bottom of the net, shooting 28.6% from the floor. Guard Marcos Molina Jr. found some success from long range, making two threes before fouling out of the contest later in the period. Congestion near the rim caused by the Fire’s bigs limited Adams’ finishing at the rim and resulted in an eight-point second half for the usually explosive guard from Miami, Fla.

While FNU struggled to get points on the board, the Fire shot 58.3% in the second and used a 10-point frame from Makai Vassell to close out their eighth win of the year. 

Adams led all scorers with 24 points to go along with four rebounds and two assists. Parrish ended the afternoon with a near-double-double, posting 16 points and nine rebounds. Gabriel Fajardo connected on three three-pointers for nine points.

Up Next: Florida National returns to action on Jan. 9 against Florida College in Temple Terrace, Fla.  

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