Jan. 17, 2009
HATTIESBURG, Miss. - Junior guard Kelvin Lewis scored a career-high 30 points, including seven 3-pointers, but it would not be quite enough as Southern Miss claimed an 83-76 win over the University of Houston men's basketball team Saturday afternoon inside Reed Green Coliseum.
Playing all but seven seconds in the game, Lewis tied his career high with seven treys, first set against Valparaiso during the 2008 College Basketball Invitational quarterfinals at Hofheinz Pavilion. His total tied for the third highest in UH single-game history.
Hitting 53.8 percent of its shots in the second half, Southern Miss built a 59-42 advantage when Jeremy Wise hit a pair of free throws with 6:52 left in the game. With a combination of outside shooting by the Cougars and poor free throw shooting by the Golden Eagles, UH chipped away at the deficit and pulled to within 73-68 when Lewis hit a trey and was fouled with only 61 seconds left in the game.
However, the Golden Eagles used four free throws from R.L. Horton and Courtney Beasley to build an 78-70 lead with 29 seconds to go. Lewis's seventh and final trey of the night pulled the Cougars to within 78-73, but that would be as close as the Cougars would get the rest of the way.
Beasley hit four straight free throws in the final 19 seconds to ice the win.
While the Golden Eagles were hitting the majority of their shots in the second half, the Cougars struggled at times from the field in the final 20 minutes, hitting only 14-of-40 shots.
The two teams battled back and forth to a 33-33 tie early in the second half, before the Golden Eagles used a 24-9 run over the next 11:53 to build their biggest lead of the game.
Junior guard Aubrey Coleman recorded his team-leading sixth double-double of the season with 14 points and 10 rebounds to lead the Cougars, while senior guard DaShaun Williams came off the bench to score a season-high 16 points, including a pair of 3-pointers in the loss.
With the loss, the Cougars fell to 11-4 overall and 2-1 in C-USA games. Southern Miss improved to 11-5 overall and 2-1 in C-USA games.
Guard Craig Craft scored 21 points, including three 3-pointers, to lead four Golden Eagles in double digits. Beasley posted 20 points and 13 rebounds, while Jeremy Wise and Horton added 11 points apiece. Gustavo Lino also recorded 11 rebounds for the Golden Eagles.
UP NEXT FOR HOUSTON
The Cougars return home to play host to C-USA rival East Carolina at 7 p.m., Wednesday, inside Hofheinz Pavilion. UH will have revenge on its mind after the Pirates escaped with an 84-83 win a year ago in Greenville, N.C.
Fans can hear the game live on 790 AM The Sports Animal with Tom Franklin calling the play-by-play action. The pregame show is slated to begin 15 minutes before tip-off each day.
Fans also can follow live stats of both games by clicking the GameTracker link at UHCougars.com.