DALLAS - University of Houston junior guard Damyean Dotson posted 16 points, and junior forward Danrad Knowles added 14 points with a team-high eight rebounds during a 77-73 loss at No. 8 SMU on Tuesday night inside Moody Coliseum.
Facing their third straight opponent which was ranked or receiving votes in a national poll, the Cougars took the nation's lone unbeaten team to the brink. Houston outrebounding the Mustangs 37-32, including 23 offensive boards, and held the lead for nearly 27 minutes in the game.
Dotson, who had been mired in a brief shooting slump, connected on 7-of-12 attempts from the field and added seven rebounds with three assists and a pair of steals.
Making his first start since Dec. 22, Knowles connected on 7-of-14 tries from the field and led all players with seven offensive rebounds.
With the loss, the Cougars fell to 13-5 overall and 3-3 in American Athletic Conference play. SMU moved to 18-0 overall and 7-0 in league action.
Competing in front of more than 7,000 fans, the Cougars were undaunted early and built a 34-26 lead on freshman point guard Galen Robinson, Jr.'s jumper with just more than three minutes remaining in the first half. Unfortunately, SMU scored the final eight points of the opening period to knot the score at 34-34 at the break.
The two teams went back and forth early in the second half before the Cougars grabbed a 57-53 lead with a pair of Robinson free throws with 7:47 left. However, the Mustangs used an 8-0 run during a 3-minute stretch to seize the lead for good.
Houston continued to chip away but was unable to score more than three straight points before the Mustangs answered each time.
SMU senior guard Nic Moore led all players with 23 points, while Markus Kennedy came off the bench to total 16 points and a game-high 10 rebounds. Guard Sterling Brown added 15 points with four rebounds and four assists, and forward Ben Moore chipped in with 10 points and six rebounds.
Houston: It was the first Top 25 opponent this season for the Cougars. They are 10-44 against ranked teams since 1997... Houston outrebounded SMU 37-32.
SMU: The Mustangs led for only 8:07 of the game. ... There are always some high-flying highlights for SMU. With just under 8 minutes left in the first half, Milton had an alley-oop pass that Sterling Brown grabbed with his right hand and slammed in a single motion. ... SMU made 24 free throws and 25 field goals.
Following Tuesday's game, the Cougars return to Hofheinz Pavilion to play host in two straight games. The brief homestand begins at 3 p.m., Saturday, when the Cougars face USF for the second time this season. Houston opened American Athletic Conference play with a 73-67 win against the Bulls in Tampa, Fla., on Dec. 30.
That game against USF also will be Houston Men's Basketball's second Youth Night. Youth basketball team members (grades K-6th) who wear their team jerseys to the USF game on Saturday will be admitted FREE to the game.
Adults accompanying youth team members in jerseys may purchase tickets on the day of the game for only $5.
Following the game, ALL youth team members (grades K-6th) are invited to visit the court where they may take a team photo on Guy V. Lewis Court and receive the Cougars' official 2015-16 team poster.
For more information about Youth Night, fans may email Director of Program Development Lauren Sampson at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Following the USF game, the Cougars conclude their homestand when they meet Tulsa at 7 p.m., Jan. 27, inside Hofheinz Pavilion.
HOW TO ORDER TICKETS
Fans have a variety of ticket options to accommodate any budget. Season tickets, group tickets, single-game tickets and 3-Point Packs are on sale now. To purchase tickets or for complete information, fans can visit uhcougars.com/tickets and follow the appropriate links or click here.
Fans also can call 713-GO-COOGS (462-6647) or visit the Athletics Ticket Office from 10 a.m., to 5:30 p.m., Monday through Friday. To purchase tickets in person, fans can visit the Athletics Ticket Office located on the northeast corner of TDECU Stadium, just outside of Gate 1 off Cullen Boulevard. Parking is available in the TDECU Stadium parking garage with the first 30 minutes free of charge.
Single-game tickets for Houston Men's Basketball's 2015-16 season begin at only $5 per game. Fans can purchase General Admission single-game tickets for only $5, while Reserved 2 seating is available for only $10 per game. Fans may buy Reserved 1 single-game tickets for $15 per ticket.
Fans can purchase single-game tickets by clicking here.
Fans can purchase three tickets to Houston home games in the 3-Point Pack. Reserved 1 seating for the 3-Point Pack can be purchased for $40 with Reserved seating available for only $30.
Fans can purchase the 3-Point Pack by clicking here.
Tickets for groups of 10-24 or more can be purchased for as low as $12 per ticket in Reserved 2 for 18 regular-season home games inside Hofheinz Pavilion. Groups of more than 25 people can buy Reserved 2 tickets for only $10 per ticket
Groups of 10-24 can buy tickets for only $10 per ticket in Reserved 2 with prices plummeting to only $6 per ticket for groups of 25 or more.
Administrators can find more information about group tickets seating and pricing by clicking here.
Fans can receive the latest news and notes by following @UHCougarMBK on Twitter. Fans also can discuss the latest Houston Men's Basketball news and notes on the team's Facebook page by clicking LIKE at HoustonCougarMensHoops.