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(Tuesday, December 31st)
Final Score: (14) Louisville 90, UCF 65
Orlando, FL (SportsNetwork.com) - Russ Smith poured in 24 points and dished out nine assists as No. 14 Louisville cruised past UCF, 90-65, in the AAC opener for both teams.
Luke Hancock added 16 points and Montrezl Harrell finished with 15 points and eight rebounds for the Cardinals (12-2, 1-0 AAC), who bounced back from a 73-66 loss to No. 18 Kentucky on Sunday.
Louisville forward Chane Behanan was dismissed from the team for "a violation of university policy" on Monday. He was averaging 7.6 points and 6.3 assists per game this season.
Isaiah Sykes scored 19 points and pulled down nine rebounds for the Knights, (8-4, 0-1), who had a five-game winning streak snapped.
The Cardinals opened the game on a 15-2 run and led 23-4 after a Wayne Blackshear trey at the 11:59 mark.
UCF rallied for a 21-8 swing to pull within 31-25, but a Chris Jones jumper followed by a Russ Smith triple gave the Cardinals a 36-25 lead. The visitors took a 40-31 lead into the break.
The Knights pulled within 10, 43-33, after a pair of Kasey Wilson free throws, but the Cardinals outscored UCF 21-7 over the next 6:50 and ran away with the win.
The Cardinals shot 51.9 percent (14-for-27) from 3-point range ... Louisville beat UCF 78-58 in the only other meeting between the schools on Dec. 15, 1999 ... The Knights shot just 35 percent (21-for-60) and 21.4 percent (3-for-14) from 3-point range.
12/31 19:26:46 ET
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