UCF Basketball falls short in NIT semifinal

UCF fell to TCU in the NIT semifinals. Courtesy UCF.

The deepest playoff run in UCF Basketball history came to a close Tuesday night in the NIT semifinal, where the Knights fell short to the TCU Horned Frogs 68-53 at Madison Square Garden in New York.

The Knights (24-11, 11-7 AAC) came out strong in the first half with senior guard Matt Williams doing what he did best all season long, hitting three three-pointers early in the game. But the Horned Frogs (23-15, 6-12 Big 12) woke up and cut the Knights’ lead to just two at halftime, leading to a very dominant second half performance.

Williams, in his final game with UCF, was the leading scorer for the Knights with 15 points. In his final season at UCF, he broke the school and American Athletic Conference (AAC) record for three pointers in a single season, totaling 126 on the year. Redshirt sophomore guard BJ Taylor put up 10 points in Tuesday’s loss.

What was expected to be a rebuilding year for the Knights and first year coach Johnny Dawkins turned into one for the history books in Orlando. The Knights surpassed the expectations of many with an appearance at the NIT Final Four, knocking off number one seed Illinois State to get there. UCF will look to build on its success next season.

TCU will move on to play Georgia Tech Thursday at 8 P.M. at Madison Square Garden for the NIT Championship.