Jan. 21, 2009
HOUSTON - Junior guard Aubrey Coleman scored 23 points to lead five players in double digits as the University of Houston men's basketball team rolled to an 85-67 win over Conference USA rival East Carolina on Wednesday inside Hofheinz Pavilion.
After battling to a 10-10 tie early, the Cougars erupted on a 23-8 run over the next 8:56 to build a 15-point cushion and would never lead by fewer than double digits the rest of the way. East Carolina cut the lead to 33-23 at the 6:45 mark on Sam Hinnant's 3-pointer, but the Cougars used another 14-4 run over a three-and-a-half minute span to seize control of the game and eventually took a 20-point advantage into the locker room at the break.
In the first 20 minutes, UH connected on nearly 60 percent of its shots, while limiting the Pirates to only 36.7 percent from the field.
With the win, the Cougars improved to 12-4 overall and 3-1 in C-USA games. The win, combined with losses by C-USA rivals Tulsa, UTEP and Southern Miss, moved the Cougars into sole possession of second place in the league, trailing only Memphis.
East Carolina fell to 9-8 overall and 1-3 in C-USA games.
Enjoying his seventh 20-point game of the season, Coleman connected on 8-of-16 shots from the field and drilled 7-of-8 attempts from the free throw line while playing all 40 minutes for the second time this season.
Senior center Marcus Cousin tied his career high with 18 points and posted a game-high 13 rebounds for his sixth double-double of the season. The Baltimore native, who also swatted four opposing shots, moved into a tie for the team lead in that category with Coleman.
Junior forward Qa'rraan Calhoun enjoyed the first double-double of his career with 12 points and a career-high 10 rebounds, while junior guard Kelvin Lewis remained a steady offensive force for the Cougars, posting 16 points with three 3-pointers.
Senior guard DaShaun Williams came off the bench to provide some key offense for the second straight game, tallying 12 points and four rebounds with a pair of assists in 25 minutes. The Chicago native finished with a season-high 16 points at C-USA rival Southern Miss on Saturday.
Hinnant scored 22 points with a pair of 3-pointers to lead the Pirates, while Darrius Morrow finished with 12 points. Jamar Abrams recorded 10 points and a team-high nine rebounds, while Brock Young posted a game-high 12 assists, the most by any Cougar opponent this season.
UP NEXT FOR HOUSTON
The Cougars return to action at 5 p.m. (CST), Saturday, when they face Arizona inside the McKale Center in Tucson, Ariz. Saturday's game will be the Cougars' final non-conference regular-season game.
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.