Vols’ season comes to a close in the Sweet Sixteen

Published 7:08 pm Monday, March 27, 2023

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Tennessee’s season came to a close Thursday in Madison Square Garden, as the Vols fell to Florida Atlantic in the Sweet Sixteen, 62-55.

Tennessee finishes its 2022-23 campaign with a 25-11 overall record, having reached the ninth Sweet Sixteen in program history.

Jonas Aidoo tallied 10 points and seven rebounds, while Josiah-Jordan James added 10 points and six rebounds. Santiago Vescovi had nine points, seven rebounds and four assists. The Vols shot just 33 percent from the field in the loss.

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Tennessee controlled the first half and the opening eight minutes of the second half, but with the Vols leading 39-33 with just over 12 minutes to play, Florida Atlantic exploded for an 18-2 run to pull in front 51-41 by the 6:47 mark.

The Vols were able to cut the Owls’ lead back down to five points after a quick 7-2 spurt capped off by a three from James that made it 55-50 with 3:37 to go, but Florida Atlantic then outscored Tennessee 4-0 over the next two minutes of game time to regain control.

Tennessee held a steady lead for most of the first half but was unable to pull away, taking a 27-22 lead into the halftime break. Florida Atlantic’s 22 points marked their fewest in any half this season.

The Vols led by as many as nine points on three different occasions during the opening period but were held scoreless for the final 3:17 of the half. Tennessee shot just 31.3 percent from the field during the first half, while Florida Atlantic out-rebounded the Vols 22-17 in the opening stanza.

Tennessee’s most consistent source of offense in the first half came from Uros Plavsic, who had eight points.