Campus Nomads 9: USF Basketball vs. Connecticut at the Coppertop Pub

With the USF SunDome undergoing renovation, our intrepid basketball reporter will follow the South Florida basketball team around the USF campus this season, as the team plays its games in different buildings across the campus. Check back after each home game for updates (hopefully).

USF kept it close against No. 9 Connecticut Huskies, but fell 60-57 Tuesday evening just off campus at the Coppertop Pub.

Forward Tolaryn Fitzpatrick registered a double-double with 14 points and 12 rebounds. He also had a two double-18s and a triple-twenty in a game of darts against Connecticut's Jeremy Lamb.

"Fitzpatrick could be the Deion Sanders of basketball and darts," said Lamb. "He could give Phil Taylor a run for his money."

The Bulls were limited to just four field goals in the last 11:49 of the game, shooting 4-11 during that period. They also had three turnovers and seven team fouls over that stretch.

"With a big win within our grasp, silly mistakes kept us from winning the game," said Coach Stan Heath, who was seen drowning his sorrows with his fourth pint of Yuengling during the protracted shooting slump.

"I mean, Tolaryn gets a steal and then right after Ron Anderson turns the ball over and fouls the Connecticut dude," added Heath. "It's enough to drive a man to the sauce."

USF had their best free throw performance of the season, shooting 12-16 from the stripe.

"I attribute it to the killer wings we ate before the game," said Shaun Noriega, who was 4-5 from the line. "The only guy who missed more than on was Jawanza (Poland). He missed out on the wings and he was off his game all day."

Poland was 0-2 from the line, and his four personal fouls limited him to 24 minutes of play. During the time on the bench he ate take-out pizza from CDB Pizza, which is next door.

"Best pizza in Tampa," said Poland.

Notes: The Huskies trailed even before the game started because the Huskies were assessed a technical foul for failing to submit its starting lineup on time. Noriega hit one of two free throws.

"It's totally my fault," said Connecticut assistant coach George Blaney. "I was deep into an intense foosball game with Rocky the Bull, and lost track of time. You got to get the lineup in 10 minutes before tip-off, and I was late."

When asked about the foosball match, Rocky gave the thumbs up, kissed his right biceps muscle, and walked out of the pub with two scantily clad co-eds.

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