Jan. 16, 2013
GREENVILLE, N.C. - Freshman forward Danuel House led four Cougars in double digits with 22 points, but it would not be quite enough as East Carolina rallied in the second half to take an 89-78 win over the University of Houston Men's Basketball team Wednesday night inside Williams Arena at Minges Coliseum.
House, a true freshman out of Hightower High, connected on 8-of-13 shots from the field during the fifth 20-point game of his young career. The Sugar Land, Texas, native added three rebounds and three assists while battling foul trouble late in the game.
House was only part of a balanced offensive attack from the Houston starters. Sophomore forward TaShawn Thomas, making the 46th consecutive start of his career, scored 18 points with eight rebounds, while senior forward Leon Gibson added 14 points and a team-high nine rebounds. Sophomore forward Joseph Young added 15 points, while junior guard Tione Womack - making the first start of his career - dished out a game-high eight assists with only one turnover.
The Cougars led for much of the game and built a 69-60 lead on a House jumper with 8:18 left in the game. However, East Carolina used a 29-9 run to close out the game.
Houston knotted the game at 76-76 on a pair of free throws from Young with 4:10 remaining and - after an ECU 3-pointer - moved to within 79-78 when Thomas converted a layup with 3:22 to go. Unfortunately, those would be the final points the Cougars would score the rest of the way.
ECU forward Maurice Kemp hit a 3-pointer on the ensuing possession, and the Pirates scored seven unanswered points for the final margin of victory.
Houston jumped out to a 36-30 halftime lead after shooting 50 percent from the field and limiting the Pirates to only 32.4 percent, including an 0-for-9 effort from the 3-point line.
In the second half, ECU buried eight 3-pointers with four from reserve guard Akeem Richmond on the way to 59 points during the final 20 points.
Kemp finished with 30 points on 13-of-20 shooting and added nine rebounds, becoming the first opponent since Oklahoma's Stephen Pledger posted 31 points during the RAMADA All-College Classic in Oklahoma City on Dec. 17, 2011.
Miguel Paul posted 16 points with a game-high-tying eight assists, while Richmond added 14 points. Ty Armstrong finished with nine points and a game-high 12 rebounds in the win.
Houston fell to 9-4 in the all-time series against East Carolina... Pirates took a 4-3 lead in the series in Greenville, N.C.
With eight assists, junior guard Tione Womack doubled his previous high of four assists at TCU on Dec. 4, 2012.
Redshirt freshman guard Jherrod Stiggers posted a career high with four assists... Topped his previous best of three vs. Grambling State on Nov. 17, 2012.
Following Wednesday's game, the Cougars returns to the friendly confines of Hofheinz Pavilion when it meets league-rival UCF at 5 p.m., Saturday. That will be the start of a three-game homestand with Tulsa (Jan. 23) and UAB (Jan. 26) to follow.
Saturday's game will be Heroes Day inside Hofheinz Pavilion. All military members (current and veteran), police, fire department and EMS personnel can receive General Admission tickets for only $5.
Track and field legend Carl Lewis will be recognized at the game and will distribute autographed items while supplies last. Fans also have the opportunity to register to win great items throughout the game, including airlines tickets, autographed items and other prizes.
Fans also will enjoy a special halftime performance from AcroDunk. This high-flying team has been featured on NBC's America's Got Talent and provides acrobatic, slam-dunk action at professional and collegiate venues across the country.
Fans can purchase discounted tickets for the UCF game. After clicking the red and white Tickets tab at UHCougars.com, click Enter Promo Code under Online Ticket Sales in the right column. Fans should then enter the promotional code "UCF" to receive the discount.
Single-game tickets for all remaining home games and a variety of ticket packs to suit any budget are on sale now. To purchase tickets, fans can call 713-GO-COOGS (462-6647) or 877-COUGAR-5 (268-4275) or visit the Athletics Ticket Office, located on the first floor of the Athletics/Alumni Center from 8 a.m., to 5 p.m., Monday through Friday, or by online at UHCougars.com.
Fans can buy tickets 24 hours a day, seven days a week, by clicking the red and white Tickets tab at UHCougars.com and following the appropriate links or by clicking here.
To secure parking spaces and to support student-athlete scholarships through Cougar Pride for the upcoming season, fans should contact Cougar Pride at 713-743-GOUH or email email@example.com. Fans also can visit UHCougars.com and click the Cougar Pride tab for more information or click here.