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CF knocks off HCC for 31st straight home win
December 5, 2013By Richard Burton of COLLEGE OF CENTRAL FLORIDA
The College of Central Florida men's basketball continued its dominance at home on Wednesday night.
The Patriots (8-2), ranked fourth in the state and 24th in the nation, earned their 31st consecutive homecourt win with an 84-68 win over Hillsborough Community College.
CF, which knocked off the Hawks for the ninth consecutive time, led by as many as 17 in the first half and kept the visitors at bay the rest of the way.
Rasham Suarez led the way for CF with 23 points and eight assists.
In four career games against HCC, Suarez has scored 77 points and dished out 33 assists.
The Southern Mississippi signee scored 15 of his points after halftime and combined with Ohio University signee Rodell Wigginton for 28 after the break.
Wigginton finished with 13 points and three steals for CF, which also had strong efforts from Javonte Douglas (11 points, 15 rebounds, four assists), Eric Moeller (10 points) and Richard Granberry (eight points and seven rebounds).
The Patriots made 30-of-59 shots overall and 22-of-33 from the foul line.
CF also forced 18 turnovers and limited HCC to 8-of-34 from 3-point range.
The last time the Hawks ventured to Ocala last December, they made 19-of-39 from beyond the arc, but struggled this time around.
Bladmiyr Santiago led HCC with 19 points, while John Wallace, Jr., contributed 15.
Wallace, who made 11-of-18 shots from 3-point range the last time the two teams met in Ocala, hit 3-of-11 from long distance on Wednesday.
"We went and scouted them and it was a point of emphasis to try and hold (Wallace) down," CF coach Tim Ryan said. "I thought our guys did a great job of doing that."
HCC ended the game 25-of-68 overall from the floor and were unable to take advantage of some early adversity for the Patriots.
CF used a 10-0 run and led 12-2 despite having starters Wigginton and Bryant in early foul trouble.
HCC battled back with a 12-2 run, but then hit a wall, as the Patriots 2-3 Zone took over.
The Hawks went a span of 6 minutes and 27 seconds without a field goal and were hit with a 15-2 run, which was capped by a dunk from Eric Moeller that made the score 29-14 with 5:26 remaining before halftime.
CF led by as many as 17, but saw HCC trim the margin to 33-26.
From there, the Patriots scored six of the final eight points of the half and went into intermission with a 39-28 advantage.
For the half, CF held HCC to 4-of-18 shooting from beyond the arc and 9-of-32 overall.
The next home game for the Patriots will take place on December 13 against Pensacola State beginning at 7:30 p.m.
The Pirates are the last road team to win at Patriot Gym, taking a 77-66 win over CF back in 2011.