Mar 9, 2012; Memphis, TN, USA; Memphis Tigers guard/forward Wesley Witherspoon (11) and Memphis Tigers guard Will Barton (5) block out UCF Knights center Josh Crittle (24) during the first half of the semi finals of the Conference USA Tournament at the FedEx Forum. Mandatory Credit: Spruce Derden-US PRESSWIRE

Conference USA Tournament 2012: Memphis Wins Championship With Easy 83-57 Victory Over Marshall

The Memphis Tigers had no trouble on Saturday in the 2012 Conference USA Championship Game, dismissing Marshall 83-57 and snagging the league's automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament.

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#UCF Defense Shut Down Blazers

The second half was not pretty if you tuned in looking for offense as UCF struggled a bit with turnovers while UAB could not hit anything. UAB missed 14 consecutive field goal attempts at one point in the game but were still able to get the lead down to six points with under six minutes yet were unable to get any closer as UCF won 64 to 54.

The Knights shot 51 percent from the field on 23 of 45 shooting and were 13 of 19 from the free throw line despite not hitting their first free throw until the final five minutes of the game. Tonight’s game was the most balanced scoring effort in quite some time as Keith Clanton, Marcus Jordan, Isaiah Sykes, A.J. Rompza, Josh Crittle, and P.J. Gaynor all had at least six points in the game but nobody scored more than 14.

The Knights lost the battle of the boards 33 to 29 and committed five more turnovers than the Blazers, but won thanks to limiting UAB to just 29 percent shooting from the floor. Defending Conference USA player of the year Cameron Moore was held to just six points in the game, with all six points coming from the free throw line as the big man was 0 of 8 from the floor.

The Knights are right back on the floor tomorrow night in front of the partisan local crowd to take on Memphis on the same court in which they were thoroughly dominated by the Tigers less than two weeks ago. Memphis played earlier tonight and won handily over UTEP.

Tonight’s victory propels UCF into the Conference USA semifinals for the first time in school history and gives the Knights a clean three game sweep of the UAB Blazers, a team they had failed to defeat in their previous seven matchups.

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