MIAMI, Fla. -- Florida International survived a cold-shooting second half and rallied down the stretch to post a 61-55 victory over Troy Saturday night in Sun Belt Conference basketball.
The Panthers (10-8, 5-4) made only nine field goals in 29 attempts over the final 20 minutes and trailed the Trojans (7-12, 2-6) by seven points (48-41) with under five minutes left.
But junior Malik Smith sparked an eight-point surge with a pair of 3-pointers and Marco Porcher Jimenez added a layup to put the Panthers up 49-48 with 3:39 remaining.
The Trojans weren't done yet, however. They went back up 52-49 with 2:28 remaining before Porcher Jimenez hit another trey to tie it.
The Panthers outscored the visitors 9-3 in the remaining time with Smith, who had a game-high 22 points, and Cameron Bell hitting four free throws in the final minute to seal the deal.
Smith's two free throws with 16 seconds left made it a two-possession game at 60-55.
Tymell Murphy scored 15 points and Bell added 12 for the Panthers.
Emil Jones led Troy with 18 points. R.J. Scott with 11 was the only other Trojan in double figures.