Feb. 17, 2007
HOUSTON Robert McKiver, Jahmar Thorpe and Oliver Lafayette combined for 45 points to lead the University of Houston men's basketball team to a 70-64 come-from-behind victory over UAB in a nationally-televised game Saturday evening at Hofheinz Pavilion.
McKiver scored 18 points to lead the Cougars, while Thorpe added 16 points and team-high eight rebounds and two blocked shots. Lafayette scored 11 points, including 10 in the second half for the Cougars.
Houston trailed for over 37 minutes in the game before Dion Dowell scored all of his nine points during a four-minute stretch late in the second period on three straight three-point shots. His third trey came with 2:22 left in the game, and gave Houston its first lead of the game, 58-56.
UAB jumped out to a 12-4 lead in the first four minutes of the game as the Cougars opened the game missing six of their first seven shots from the field. The only points Houston scored during that stretch were two free throws by Thorpe and Lafayette's jump shot inside the lane.
Houston pulled to within one point, three times during the first half. The first time came with 12:21 left when Marcus Malone hit his only three-point shot to make the score 15-14. After UAB extended its lead to four points, McKiver hit a three-pointer from the top of the key to pull Houston back to within 18-17 with 9:40 to play in the opening period.
The Cougars came back from a six-point deficit to pull to within 25-24 on Robert Lee's lay-up with 2:46 left in the first half. But, UAB closed the half with an 8-2 run to take a 33-26 lead at halftime.
In the second half, the Blazers opened up a 12-point lead twice before McKiver scored five straight points on a three-point shot and a lay-up, to make the score, 40-33, with 14:52 left to play in the game.
Houston chipped away at the lead and tied the score, 40-40, with 12:14 remaining when Lafayette nailed a three-point shot. The Cougars tied the score two more times before Mukubu hit a three-point shot to give the Blazers a 50-46 lead with 8:16 left in the game.
After Frank Holmes made a lay-up to extend the lead to 52-46, Dowell connected on his first, three-point basket.
He nailed a second trey with 3:09 left to make the score, 56-55. Then, he pulled up for his third, three-pointer on Houston's next possession to give the Cougars their first lead of the game.
The Cougars never trailed again and led by as many as eight points, 70-62, before UAB's Wen Mukubu hit two free throws with six seconds left to make the final score, 70-64.
The victory gives Houston a 14-11 overall record, and improved the Cougars record to 8-3 in C-USA play.
Houston will look for its 15th win of the season Monday night, when the Cougars play a C-USA game at Southern Miss. UH returns home for its fourth game in seven days when the Cougars play host to Tulane next Wednesday night, Feb. 21, in Hofheinz Pavilion. Both of the games tip off at 7:00 p.m. (CST).