Johnson, Soko lead UAB past UCF 63-58

Aaron Johnson scored 19 points and Ovie Soko had a double-double to lead Alabama-Birmingham to a 63-58 win over Central Florida on Saturday.

Soko finished with 13 points and 10 rebounds — six offensive — for the Blazers (19-7, 9-4 Conference USA). Jamarr Sanders scored 12 points and Preston Purifoy added 11.

UAB trailed only midway through the first half, taking control after halftime. The Blazers took a 50-40 lead with 5:06 left in the second half when Soko made a free throw.

UCF tried to rally late, but the Golden Knights (16-9, 3-9) didn't have enough time. Marcus Jordan, who led UCF with 18 points, scored on a layup and A.J. Rompza hit a 3-pointer to cut the margin to three with seven seconds left.

But Sanders' two free throws gave UAB, which has won of four of its last five games, enough cushion for the win.