Bayless propels Wildcat win

It was a happy homecoming for the Houston players on the Wildcats. Thanks to a return of Jerryd Bayless the Cats beat Houston 85-71 to snap a two-game losing streak.

Even after the Wildcats announced that Bayless was going to return, the Wildcat coaching staff was not sure how much he'd be able to go. He showed little sign of rust or fatigue, scoring a career high 33 points while logging 39 minutes.

Native Houstonians Jawann McClellan, Nic Wise and Fendi Onobun combined to score 19 points. Onobun was the lone Wildcat bench scorer for the Cats and logged 17 points, much of it in relief for Jordan Hill who battled first half foul trouble.

Hill and Chase Budinger each scored 17, with Hill adding nine rebounds for the Wildcats.

It was an ugly start for both teams. Houston not only struggled from the floor, but also had turnover issues. Despite this, they hung with Arizona and only trailed by a point with 9:00 left in the first half.

The Cats gave themself a cushion at the half and stormed out of the half on a 13-4 run and from there were able to fend off a couple of Houston rallies, includng an 11-0 rin with 9:00 left.

The game showed just how important Bayless is to the team. With Bayless the Cats are 10-2, without 1-3. The Wildcats were also clearly better with Hill in the game. With Hill, Bayless and Budinger on the floor together, the Wildcats have suddenly become much tougher to guard. With one of them out, the offense really suffers.

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