Tigers Tested, but Survive North of the Border (El Paso, TX)— Memphis put their 52 game C-USA winning streak on the line, and got all they could handle from the UTEP Miners before prevailing, 70-63. UTEP led for much of the first half and took a 30-27 advantage into the break. The Tigers then came out of the locker room and put together a 20-8 run to give them space and survived several furious UTEP runs.
Freshman guard Tyreke Evans was Memphis' go-to-guy as he scored big bucket after big bucket and finished with 25 points on 9-13 shooting. Stefon Jackson, the C-USA all-time leading scorer, led the Miners with 24 points.
The victory was Memphis' (24-3, 12-0 C-USA) 18th straight, the longest winning streak in the nation. UTEP (16-10, 7-5 C-USA) halted their three-game winning streak and is now fifth in the conference.
Blazers Remain Red Hot (Birmingham, AL)— The UAB Blazers enjoyed their home cookin' as they shot nearly 56% from the field en route to an 86-56 blowout victory over the Southern Miss Golden Eagles. Guards Robert Vaden and Channing Toney each scored 22 points for UAB, as the game was out of reach from the early moments. Jeremy Wise dropped in16 points in a losing effort for Southern Miss.
The victory was UAB's (19-8, 9-3 C-USA) sixth straight, while Southern Miss (14-12, 4-8 C-USA) has lost six of their last seven.
Tulane Rallies Late to Beat Marshall (New Orleans, LA)— The Tulane Green Wave used some clutch free throw shooting by Kevin Sims to down the visiting Marshall Thundering Herd, 57-51. Sims connected on all 11 free throw attempts en route to a 19 point effort, including four straight from the charity stripe to seal the victory. Markel Humphrey led the Herd with 16 points.
Tulane (11-15, 5-8 C-USA) stopped a two-game losing streak with the win, while Marshall (12-15, 4-8 C-USA) has lost two of their last three.
Cougars Withstand Big Game by Taylor, Sweep Knights (Houston, TX)— Four-time C-USA Player of the Week Jermaine Taylor scored 35 points for the second consecutive game, but it was not enough as the Houston Cougars defeated UCF, 77-72. In a game that was tight throughout, Houston took the lead for good with eight minutes left and held on for the hard-fought victory. Aubrey Coleman led the Cougars with 28 points on 10-16 shooting, and fellow guard Kelvin Lewis added 22 points.
The win allowed Houston (17-8, 8-4 C-USA) to sweep the season series from UCF, and it was their fifth victory in their last six contests. UCF (16-10, 6-6 C-USA) has dropped four of their last five.
Tulsa Dominates in the Second Half to Down ECU (Tulsa, OK)— The Tulsa Golden Hurricane outscored visiting ECU 39-23 in the second half en route to a 72-62 victory. Ben Uzoh led the Hurricane with 23 points on 7-16 shooting, while Justin Hurtt added 17 points. ECU was led by senior guard Sam Hinnant, who scored 16 of his team high 21 points in the first half. v Tulsa (18-9, 8-4 C-USA) has won six out of their last eight games, while ECU (13-13, 5-8 C-USA) has dropped three of their last four.
SMU Holds on for Second Conference Victory (Dallas, TX)— SMU posted just their second conference victory as they withstood a second half rally by the Rice Owls to win, 69-66. Freshman forward Robert Nyakundi led a balanced Mustangs scoring attack with 14 points and 6 rebounds, and guards Mike Walker and Paul McCoy both came off the bench to score 14 and 13 respectively. Rodney Foster was the leading scorer for Rice, as he bucketed 18 points on 7-15 shooting in the losing effort.
The victory stopped a three-game losing skid by SMU (8-17, 2-10 C-USA), while Rice (8-18, 3-9 C-USA) has dropped three straight.
Conference USA Hoops Roundup
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