Men's Hoops Back in Action on Saturday at Texas A&M-Corpus Christi

Dec. 16, 2010

7 p.m. • Saturday, Dec. 18, 2010 • American Bank Center (8,400) • Corpus Christi, Texas

Houston Sports Network • SportsTalk 790 AM KBME
Tom Franklin, PxP; Elvin Hayes, analyst
• Broadcast begins at 6:45 p.m.



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CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas - After taking a break from competition, the University of Houston men's basketball team returns to action at 7 p.m., Saturday, at American Bank Center when it meets Texas A&M-Corpus Christi.

For the last week, student-athletes in all 16 intercollegiate sports at Houston have focused on final examinations at the end of the fall semester. Those tests ended Thursday evening, and the Cougars men's hoops team hits the floor again for the first time since a disappointing 68-63 home loss to UTSA on Dec. 11.

That loss snapped the Cougars' eight-game home winning streak dating back to 2009-10.

Against the Roadrunners, senior forward Maurice McNeil enjoyed a career night, scoring a personal-high 26 points with 12 rebounds for his team- and Conference USA-leading fifth double-double of the season.

Senior guards Adam Brown and Zamal Nixon each posted 10 points for the Cougars in the loss.

Brown continues to lead the Cougars with 13.5 points per game and tops the league with a 51.2 percentage from 3-point range. This season, the San Antonio, Texas, native has enjoyed double-digit performances points, rebounds and assists in various games.

He became the first Cougar since guard Lanny Smith in 2005-06 to accomplish that feat in a season and is only the second player since 1983-84 when legendary center Hakeem Olajuwon reached double digits in points, rebounds and blocked shots.

McNeil nearly averages a double-double through the first 10 games, posting 12.2 points and a team-high 9.4 rebounds per contest.

Sophomore forward Kendrick Washington comes off the bench to provide a spark for the Cougars with 12.0 points and 6.4 rebounds per game, ranking third in points and second in rebounding on the team. The Shreveport, La., native also ranks among the league's top-five individual leaders in field goal percentage, nailing better than 56 percent of his shots.

Saturday's game can be heard live on SportsTalk 790 AM KBME with Tom Franklin calling the play-by-play action and Cougar legend Elvin Hayes as analyst. The pregame show begins at 6:45 p.m.

Fans can follow live stats from Saturday's game by clicking the Live Stats link at UHCougars.com.

Texas A&M-Corpus Christi brings a 3-6 overall record into this weekend's game. The Islanders have lost two of their last three games and dropped an 86-50 decision at Marquette on Dec. 7 in their most recent action.

Against Marquette, senior forward Demond Watt was the only Islander to reach double-digit points, scoring 17 on 7-of-11 shooting. Senior forward Justin Reynolds fell just a point shy of a double-double with nine points and a game-high 10 rebounds.

Watt leads the Islanders, averaging a double-double with 16.6 points and 10.2 rebounds per game and is tied for the team lead with 1.8 assists per game.

Sophomore guard Terence Jones is tied with Watt for the team lead with 1.8 assists per contest. Reynolds is a distant second with 6.7 rebounds per game.

TAMUCC has posted a 2-1 home record this season with wins against Northeastern State in the season opener and against St. Edward's. Head coach Perry Clark is 5-5 against Houston during his collegiate career but is 0-2 against the Cougars with the Islanders. Clark previously served as head coach at Tulane (1989-98) and Miami (Fla.) (2000-04) with all the earlier meetings coming during his days with the Green Wave.

The Cougars have posted a perfect 4-0 record against Texas A&M-Corpus Christi in the all-time series, which began Jan. 7, 2006. Those games have been close, though, with three of the four being decided by fewer than 10 points.

Houston has posted a 1-0 record against the Islanders in Corpus Christi, Texas. Saturday's game will be the first time since an 82-74 win on Feb. 7, 2006, that the Cougars will compete against the Islanders on their home court.

The Cougars return to the friendly confines of Hofheinz Pavilion to play host for the final two games of the year 2010. The Cougars meet Sam Houston State at 7 p.m., Tuesday, and then close out the year against Rogers State at 6 p.m., Dec. 30.

Cougar men's basketball tickets are available now. Fans can choose from a variety of different ticket packages that best suit their needs, including the Weekend Package (8 Saturday home games) and the Conference USA Package (8 C-USA home games).

The Athletics Ticket Office also is offering a special holiday promotion for the final two home games of 2010. For the Sam Houston State (Dec. 21) and the Rogers State (Dec. 30) games, fans will receive two youth tickets (ages 3 through high school) for each adult ticket purchased.

Fans have several options when ordering their men's basketball tickets. They can visit the Athletics Ticket Office, located on the first floor of the Athletics/Alumni Center by the UH Fan Shop, from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday through Friday.

Fans also can call 713-GO-COOGS (462-6647) or click the Tickets link at UHCougars.com to buy tickets today.



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