No. 18/17 Cincinnati Bearcats traveled to Tampa, Florida to face American Athletic Conference foe USF Bulls. The Bearcats fresh off of their first loss in conference play were looking to get back on the right track of things Wednesday. January 29th they beat the Bulls at Fifth Third Arena 94-53.
During the first half at times it looked like they were feeling the effect of the loss on Sunday, but strong first half performances by Kevin Johnson and Gary Clark gave the Bearcats a 30-22 lead at the half. Johnson had 10 points and Clark had 6 points, 9 rebounds and 3 blocks (including a layup at the buzzer to put the Bearcats up 8 at the half). During the first half they played at USF's pace allowing them to stay in the game, but even with shooting 36.7% from the floor the defensive activity was up so it allowed the away team to leave their stamp on the game. They won the battle on the boards 20 to 18 and won the turnover battle 7 to 11.
In the second half the Bearcats started on a 8 -0 run to give them the distance they needed to put the Bulls away. They did a much better job attacking the zone with extra passes and better cutting. Finishing with four players with double digits the boys from Clifton got back on the winning track, Troy Caupain finally hit a three and had a quick five point spur that should give fans hope the steady point guard is coming out of his slump. Jacob Evans also had a few big dunks that maybe means he will start attacking more also. Caupain and Evans must stay aggressive for this team in March.
Clark finished with 13 points, 14 rebounds and 4 blocks.
Johnson finished with 14 points (a team high).
Kyle Washington finished with 13 points, 9 rebounds and 2 blocks.
Evans had 10 points.
Cincinnati is now 23-3 overall and 12-1 in the AAC they play Tulsa at home on Saturday at Noon on ESPNU.
Check out my video recap of the Bearcats win >>> link