JACKSONVILLE, Fla. (December 9, 2020) – Despite trailing by 15 at the half, the Florida National men’s basketball team (2-10) pulled within three midway through the second but could not take the lead, falling to Jacksonville (4-2), 78-69, during the second day of the BSN Sports Dolphin Classic.
The Conquistadors dug themselves a hole in the first half, shooting just 29.7 percent from the floor including a 2-of-16 effort from 3-point range to fall behind, 40-25, heading into halftime.
FNU found its shot in the second half, outscoring the Dolphins, 32-20, over a 12-minute span to pull within three. A jumper by Hirotaka Ohashi with 7:20 on the clock cut JU’s lead to 60-57. However, the Dolphins never gave up the lead, holding no less than a six-point lead for the remainder of the game.
FNU was led offensively by Jose Benitez, who scored a team-high 17 points on 8-of-17 shooting. Benitez also grabbed five rebounds, dished out four assists, and registered two steals. Benitez was one of four Conquistadors with 10-or-more points in the game. Jeffrey Hernandez added 15 points on 7-of-20 shooting while leading FNU in rebounding with eight boards. Kenneth Santos contributed 14 points, shooting 5-of-8 from the field, including four buckets downtown. Rounding out the team’s top scorers was Yamil Diaz, who scored 13 points on 5-of-8 shooting.
The Conquistadors finished the night, shooting 37.7 percent from the floor (29-of-77) and was 9-of-32 from 3-point range (28.1 percent). JU ended the game, hitting 31-of-59 from the field (52.5 percent) and converting 34.8 percent from 3-point land (8-of-23).
The Dolphins outrebounded the Conquistadors, 49-34, while FNU held a 12-10 edge on the offensive glass.
FNU will wrap up the BSN Sports Dolphin Classic versus Campbell on Thursday, December 10. Game time is set for 1:00 p.m.