The Cincinnati Bearcats came into this game ranked 24th in the nation as of Monday afternoon, but after watch the first half I think our boys were reading the clippings like everybody else. They welcomed the Southeastern Louisiana Lions into Fifth Third Arena on Tuesday evening on a quest to remain undefeated.
The first half was very ugly for the Bearcats as the Lions showed a lot of girt keeping the game close the whole half. Up 30-22 at the half the first half was highlighted by bad shooting, but decent defense. UC shot 34.5% from the field, 18.2% from the arc and 66.7% from the free throw line. They had 22 rebounds and 5 steals, but the Lions hit a few timely shots to keep close distance the whole half.
Sophomore forward Gary Clark led the team in the first half with 12 points on 4 of 7 from the field, 1 of 1 from 3-point range, 3 of 5 from the free throw line and 4 rebounds. Octavius Ellis was a glass cleaner in the first half with 9 rebounds.
Junior guard Joshua Fillmore was the key guy for the Lions in the first half with 9 points hitting three shots from 3-point range.
The second half was a gritty 20 minutes, but the Bearcats got hot from the 3-point line late in the half to secure victory. Jacob Evans led the charge with back to back 3-pointers to push the lead to 11 points around the 7 minute mark. Troy Caupain also went on a personal 5-0 run on the Lions after Evans got the ball rolling.
The Bearcats shot 48%from the field, 50% from the 3-point line and 80% from the foul line in the second half.
The Lions were able to run the clock down, get good shots and get a lot offensive rebounds (10 total for the game and 8 in the second half). They were able to play good defense at times which made the Bearcats work harder than expected.
UC only had three players in double digits tonight (Gary Clark, Troy Caupain and Jacob Evans), but this was a good test to get them ready for the always battle tested Nebraska Cornhuskers on Friday.
The Bearcats won 64-49 to remain undefeated on the season.