Central Florida's quest for a second consecutive Mid-Florida Conference championship ended on Wednesday with an 82-74 loss at Daytona State. The Falcons clinched the MFC title with the victory.
The loss means CF (24-6, 6-2) will have to fight its way to the postseason through the Mid-Florida Conference Tournament. That starts Monday at 7:30 p.m. with the Patriots hosting St. Johns River. A win in that game puts CF in the conference tournament final Tuesday, where it would host the winner of the FSC-Jacksonville-Santa Fe semifinal with the conference's other state tournament berth on the line.
The Patriots trailed by 10 at the half but cut the lead to a single basket in the second half. Timely shots by Daytona and some unfortunate misses by the Patriots doomed the comeback attempt.
Ricardo Ratliffe scored a game-high 26 points and added 7 rebounds, while Travis Johnson added 16 points and Josh Proctor added 10.