HOUSTON - University of Houston sophomore guard Armoni Brooks poured in a career-high 24 points with six 3-pointers -- including three straight during a key stretch midway through the second half -- to lift the Cougars to a 92-72 win over Prairie View A&M inside H&PE Arena on Sunday afternoon in a game presented by Maintenance Supply Headquarters.
Houston erupted on a 31-10 run to end the game with Brooks' long-range shots leading the way. The two teams went back and forth before Prairie View A&M claimed a 62-61 lead when Gary Blackston drained a jumper with 11:13 left.
On the Cougars' ensuing possessions, Houston Head Coach Kelvin Sampson called Brooks' number, and the Round Rock, Texas, native answered. Following a missed Houston shot and PVAMU turnover, Brooks drained a trey with 10:42 lead to give Houston the lead for good.
After another Panther turnover, Brooks pushed the Cougar lead to 67-62 midway through the second half. The Panthers called timeout to slow the Cougar rally, but after another PVAMU giveaway, a missed Houston shot and offensive rebound, Brooks buried another trey for a 70-62 Houston lead with 9:06 remaining.
Brooks enjoyed his second 20-point game of the season after totaling 22 points with five 3-pointers in the Cougars' season-opening win over McNeese on Nov. 10 inside H&PE Arena. He also posted four rebounds with three assists.
The Cougars connected on 54.7 percent (29-of-53) from the field but endured 14 first-half turnovers to hold a 44-39 halftime lead.
Houston posted only five giveaways in the second half and hit 56.0 percent from the field while limiting the Panthers to only 38.5 percent (10-of-26) during the final 20 minutes.
With the win, the Cougars improved to 9-2 overall, while Prairie View A&M fell to 2-9 The Cougars also finished their non-conference home schedule with a 6-0 record inside H&PE Arena and collected their fourth straight win against the Panthers.
Brooks was one of five Cougars to reach double-digit points Sunday. Junior point guard Corey Davis Jr. finished with 15 points and continued his recent hot shooting, sinking 4-of-7 from the 3-point line.
Senior guard and American Athletic Conference scoring leader Rob Gray was held after foul trouble to only 11 points, extending his streak with 10+ points to 41 consecutive games. However, the Forest City, N.C., native added four rebounds with four assists.
Senior forward Devin Davis posted 10 points with a game-high seven rebounds and added two assists and a pair of steals, while senior guard Wes VanBeck finished with 10 points, three rebounds, two assists and three steals. Junior point guard Galen Robinson Jr. recorded nine points and dished out a game-high six assists with two steals in the win.
Zachary Hamilton and Dennis Jones led Prairie View A&M with 18 points apiece, while Troy Thompson added 11 points. J.D. Wallace led the Panthers with five rebounds.
Following Sunday's game, the Cougars close out the regular-season non-conference schedule vs. Providence at 6 p.m. (CST), Wednesday, in Hall of Fame Holiday Showcase at Mohegan Sun in Uncasville, Conn.
Game can be seen on ESPNU and heard on KPRC 950 AM.
From there, the Cougars return to action when they open American Athletic Conference play at 6 p.m. (CST), Dec. 28 at USF in Tampa, Fla... Game can be seen on ESPNews and heard on KPRC 950 AM.
Cougars open American play in Houston when they play host to Temple at 5 p.m., Dec. 30, inside H&PE Arena.
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