Clanton, No. 19 UCF handle FurmanDec 30, 2010 - 6:51 AM Orlando, FL (Sports Network) - Keith Clanton scored 21 points and collected nine rebounds to help No. 19 UCF remain undefeated with a 71-53 win over Furman in the UCF Holiday Classic.
Marcus Jordan chipped in 15 points and four assists for the Knights (12-0), who are nationally ranked for the first time in the program's history. Isaiah Sykes and Tom Herzog had 12 and 10 points, respectively, while Sykes added five boards.
"Our identity is playing hard," Herzog said. "One of the big components of defense is playing hard. I think we've been able to play some really good team defense."
UCF will take on Princeton on Thursday in their home tournament.
Amu Saaka turned in 17 points and was the lone scorer for Furman (8-3) to reach double digits. The loss snapped the Paladins' five game win streak.
Colin Reddick had 13 rebounds and nine points in the loss.
Jordan jump-started the Knights by scoring seven points during the first 5 1/2 minutes for a 14-6 edge. But Darryl Evans' layup with nine minutes left to play in the half cut the Paladins' deficit to 18-14.
The half ended with a 10-4 UCF run, capped by Clanton's three-point play, and a 39-27 advantage at the break.
UCF continued to roll in the second half, building a 45-28 lead just 4 1/2 minutes in.
Clanton's dunk and short jumper gave the Knights a 68-50 edge and the margin grew to 20 with two minutes remaining after two free throw by Sykes. The starters were pulled for the final two minutes with the game in hand.
UCF won its only previous meeting with Furman in 1979...The Knights had not played since picking up a 64-59 victory at UMass on December 22...Clanton was 8-of-16 from the floor...Jordan was 3-for-3 from beyond the arc.
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