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Florida Atlantic drills bucket with 2.5 seconds left to advance in March Madness over Memphis

The madness keeps on coming in March.

Nicholas Boyd hit the game-winning layup with 2.5 seconds to go to sending No. 9 Florida Atlantic to the second round of the NCAA tournament over No. 8 Memphis with a 66-65 win.

It was the first win for FAU in tournament history.

Memphis led 65-64 with less than 30 seconds to go, and after FAU missed a layup, they had the chance to milk the clock forcing the Owls to foul. 

Unfortunately they turned the ball over, the possession arrow pointed toward FAU after a tie-up, and Boyd laid in the winning bucket.

That tie-up, though, did not come without controversy. FAU turned the ball right back over beforehand, and it looked like Memphis may have regained possession to call a timeout, but the refs did not call it as such. 

Instead of it being the Tigers’ ball allowing them to draw a foul and drive to the line, it gave FAU ball with a chance to sink the game-winning bucket, and they did.

Out of timeouts, Memphis tried for a long three-pointer, but they didn’t get it off in time, and it was blocked.

Boyd was just 3-for-10 from the floor, but the last one was the most important of them all.

Florida Atlantic players celebrate their 66-65 win against the Memphis Tigers after a first-round college basketball game in the NCAA Tournament Friday, March 17, 2023, in Columbus, Ohio.


Four Owls had double-digit points, with Giancarlo Rosado’s 15 off the bench leading the way.

FAU’s largest lead of the night got up to 10 points leaving them confident they could coast. Memphis’ largest lead was by seven.

Florida Atlantic guard Nicholas Boyd (2) hits the game winning basket against the Memphis Tigers in the second half of a first-round college basketball game in the NCAA Tournament Friday, March 17, 2023, in Columbus, Ohio. Florida Atlantic won 66-65.

FAU will now face No. 16 Fairleigh Dickinson after the Knights became the second 16-seed in tournament history to upset a No. 1 seed with their 63-58 victory over top-seed Purdue.

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