HOUSTON - University of Houston junior guard Rob Gray led the Cougars with 15 points, but it would not be quite enough as Harvard claimed a 57-56 win on Friday evening inside Hofheinz Pavilion.
Gray, who was a Preseason All-American Athletic Conference selection, did a little of everything for the Cougars, posting three assists with a block and three steals.
Houston held a 52-43 lead when senior guard Damyean Dotson drained a 3-pointer with 6:35 left. However, Harvard closed out the game on a 14-4 run to defeat the Cougars for the second time in a three-year stretch.
The Cougars entered the game 19th nationally in field goal percentage but endured their lowest shooting percentage of the season, hitting only 33.3 percent of their 60 shots.
Despite the spotty shooting, Houston had a chance to win the game. Harvard took the lead for good with 1:12 remaining when Zena Edosomwan banked in a layup. After a Houston turnover gave the ball to the Crimson, Harvard worked the clock down but Gray tied up Bryce Aiken with 17 seconds left and the possession arrow in Houston's favor.
Following a Houston timeout, the Cougars played for the last shot but Gray's try at the buzzer was off the mark, ending Houston's seven-game winning streak in Hofheinz Pavilion dating back to last season.
Aiken came off the bench to lead Harvard with a game-high 21 points and added three rebounds with three assists and three steals.
Houston fell to 9-3, while Harvard improved to 5-4.
Following Friday's game, Cougars open American Athletic Conference play when they take on UConn inside the XL Center in Hartford, Conn. at 2 p.m. (CST), Wednesday... Game can be seen on ESPN2 and heard on KPRC 950 AM.
From there, Houston heads south to take on USF inside the Sun Dome in Tampa, Fla., at 11 a.m. (CST), Dec. 31... Game can be seen on ESPNU and heard on KPRC 950 AM.
Houston returns to the friendly confines of Hofheinz Pavilion with back-to-back home games against Tulsa (8 p.m., Jan. 4) and against No. 24/23 Cincinnati (8 p.m., Jan. 7).
Season tickets, single-game tickets, mini-plans and group ticket packages are available to accommodate all budgets. Fans can visit uhcougars.com/tickets, 24 hours a day, seven days a week, and follow the appropriate links or call 713-GO-COOGS (462-6647) to order tickets.
Current University of Houston main campus students are admitted FREE to all Men's Basketball games with valid IDs. Main campus students may purchase up to two (2) student guest tickets to each Men's Basketball game for $8 each, based on availability.
For as low as $80, fans can purchase season tickets to all 16 regular-season game plus two exhibition contests during the final season inside Hofheinz Pavilion. Reserved 2 seating is available for only $130, while fans can enjoy Reserved 1 seating for $225.
Single game tickets begin at only $12 for American Athletic Conference games and $10 for non-conference games.
JOIN the 50-50 CLUB
Fans are invited to join the 50-50 Club to support Houston Men's Basketball. 50-50 Club members help fund program necessities and enhance the experience for our student-athletes.
Fans who join the 50-50 Club will receive embroidered team apparel, a signed basketball, invitations to practice, a tour of the $25 million Guy V. Lewis Development Facility, regular updates about the program and much more.
Fans can receive updates by following @UHCougarMBK on Twitter and catch up with the latest news and notes on the team by clicking LIKE on the team's Facebook and Instagram pages.