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Escobar knocks down a late 3, N. Florida tops NJIT 82-75

NEWARK, N.J. -- JT Escobar wielded the dagger, Wajid Aminu had a season-high 21 points, Ivan Gandia-Rosa made a key steal as the clock was winding down and North Florida beat NJIT 82-75 on Thursday night.

Escobar, who scored just five points, knocked down a bulls-eye 3-pointer from the left side, boosting North Florida's lead to 77-71 with 42.7 seconds on the clock. NJIT fought to 79-75 before Gandia-Rosa's steal with 14.3 seconds left was the stopper.

Carter Hendricksen scored 19 points and grabbed eight rebounds for North Florida, which maintains its share, with Liberty, of first place in the Atlantic Sun Conference.

Garrett Sams added 12 points and seven rebounds. Gandia-Rosa had eight points and seven assists for the Ospreys (15-10, 8-2)..

Zach Cooks led the Highlanders (7-15, 4-5) with 19 points. San Antonio Brinson added 14 points. Souleymane Diakite had 13 points, 15 rebounds and three blocks.

North Florida, the national leader with 291 3-point baskets (and 12.1 per game) was 6-for-13 shooting from distance at NJIT

The Ospreys leveled the season series against the Highlanders with the win. NJIT defeated North Florida 78-66 on Jan. 11. North Florida faces Florida Gulf Coast on the road on Saturday. NJIT plays Jacksonville at home on Saturday.

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Elements of this story were generated by Automated Insights, http://www.automatedinsights.com/ap, using data from STATS LLC, https://www.stats.com