|EASTERN ILLINOIS PANTHERS (2-6 0-0 OVC)
at HOUSTON COUGARS (7-1 0-0 American)
presented by Maintenance Supply Headquarters
Global Sports Classic Second Round
|Tickets||BUY Tickets Tickets Info|
|Time||3 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 19, 2015|
|Location||Hofheinz Pavilion (8,479) Houston|
Brett Dolan, PxP
Reid Gettys, analyst
|Radio||KPRC 950 AM Listen Live
Matt Thomas, PxP
Elvin Hayes, analyst
Pregame show starts at 2:45 p.m.
|Series History||First meeting|
|Game Notes|| Houston Notes
Eastern Illinois Notes
The American Notes
HOUSTON - Winners of seven of its first eight games, the University of Houston Men's Basketball program continues play in the Global Sports Classic when it hosts Eastern Illinois at 3 p.m., Saturday, inside Hofheinz Pavilion.
The Cougars, who are 7-1 for the first time since 2008-09, will play their second first-time opponent this week. On Wednesday, Houston overcame cold shooting in the first half to take a 73-65 win over North Carolina Central inside Hofheinz Pavilion.
Against NCCU, Houston hit only 31 percent of its 29 shots from the field in the first half and trailed 31-28 at the break. Fortunately, the Cougars took advantage of a 19-4 run midway through the second half with junior guard Ronnie Johnson scoring eight of his 12 points during that stretch.
This season, the Cougars boast the American Athletic Conference's top team and individual in scoring offense and rank 13th nationally with 86.1 points per game. In his first year at Houston, sophomore guard Rob Gray, Jr., leads the league with 18.9 points per game and is the only Cougar to reach double-digit points in all eight games to date.
Senior forward Devonta Pollard ranks second on the team with 15.0 points per game and is tied for fifth in the league, making Houston one of only two teams in The American (Tulsa) with two of the league's top-6 scorers.
Freshman point guard Galen Robinson, Jr., is tops on the Cougars and in the American Athletic Conference with a 5.2 assist-to-turnover ratio and stands seventh nationally that that total. Junior point guard Ronnie Johnson ranks 10th in the league with a 1.8-to-1 total.
YOUTH BASKETBALL NIGHT
Saturday's game will be the first Youth Night of the 2015-16 season inside Hofheinz Pavilion.
Youth basketball teams (grades K-6th) are invited to wear their team jerseys and be admitted for FREE. Additional tickets for anyone accompanying a youth player in a team jersey will be available on the day of the game for only $5.
Youth teams are invited to take a group photo on Guy V. Lewis Court following the Cougars' game and receive Houston's official 2015-16 team poster.
Fans should make plans to join the Cougars' next Youth Night when the team faces American Athletic Conference rival USF on Jan. 23 inside Hofheinz Pavilion.
For more information about Youth Basketball Nights, fans should email firstname.lastname@example.org.
With the Christmas holidays quickly approaching, young (and old) Houston fans will love a chance to take a photo with Shasta Claus.
Shasta Claus will be taking photos with all fans on the concourse by the Holman Street entrance before Wednesday's game against North Carolina Central and again before Saturday's game against Eastern Illinois.
Gates open one hour before tipoff.
Fans also will have the opportunity to take photos with Shasta Claus prior to the Women's Basketball game at UT Rio Grande Valley, which tips off at 1 p.m., Sunday.
RADIO / TELEVISION
Fans can hear Saturday's Men's Basketball game live on KPRC 950 AM with Matt Thomas calling the action and Hall of Famer Elvin Hayes providing analysis. The pregame show begins at 2:45 p.m., Saturday.
Fans can hear the radio broadcast online by visiting UHCougars.com and following the appropriate links to Houston All-Access or by clicking here. A Houston All-Access subscription is required to listen to the game online.
The game will be shown on ESPN3 with Brett Dolan calling the play-by-play action and former Houston great Reid Gettys providing analysis. Fans can watch the game online by visiting WatchESPN or by clicking here.
Fans can follow live scoring with GameTracker by visiting UHCougars.com and following the appropriate links or by clicking here.
HOW TO ORDER TICKETS
Fans have a variety of ticket options to accommodate any budget. Season tickets, group tickets, single-game tickets and 3-Point Packs are on sale now. To purchase tickets or for complete information, fans can visit uhcougars.com/tickets and follow the appropriate links or click here.
Fans also can call 713-GO-COOGS (462-6647) or visit the Athletics Ticket Office from 10 a.m., to 5:30 p.m., Monday through Friday. To purchase tickets in person, fans can visit the Athletics Ticket Office located on the northeast corner of TDECU Stadium, just outside of Gate 1 off Cullen Boulevard. Parking is available in the TDECU Stadium parking garage with the first 30 minutes free of charge.
Current University of Houston students are admitted free to ALL Houston Men's Basketball game when presenting a valid ID at the doors.
Single-game tickets for Houston Men's Basketball's 2015-16 season begin at only $5 per game. Fans can purchase General Admission single-game tickets for only $5, while Reserved 2 seating is available for only $10 per game. Fans may buy Reserved 1 single-game tickets for $15 per ticket.
Fans can purchase single-game tickets by clicking here.
Fans can purchase tickets to any three remaining home games in the 3-Point Pack. Reserved 1 seating for the 3-Point Pack can be purchased for $40 with Reserved seating available for only $30.
Fans can purchase the 3-Point Pack by clicking here.
Tickets for groups of 10-24 or more can be purchased for as low as $12 per ticket in Reserved 2 for 18 regular-season home games inside Hofheinz Pavilion. Groups of more than 25 people can buy Reserved 2 tickets for only $10 per ticket
Groups of 10-24 can buy tickets for only $10 per ticket in Reserved 2 with prices plummeting to only $6 per ticket for groups of 25 or more.
Administrators can find more information about group tickets seating and pricing by clicking here.
ABOUT EASTERN ILLINOIS
Eastern Illinois enters Saturday's game with a 2-6 overall record. The Panthers have dropped their last two games and not won since a 79-73 win in overtime on Dec 5 against Northern Kentucky.
In its most recent action, Eastern Illinois dropped a 64-57 decision at Western Illinois on Dec. 12. Senior forward Trae Anderson led EIU with 14 points, while sophomore guard Cornell Johnston added 13 points and team highs of six rebounds and four assists. Junior guard A.J. Riley totaled 12 points with three rebounds.
This season, Anderson leads the Panthers with 15.8 points and 4.8 rebounds per game. Riley stands second on the team with 14.4 points and 4.1 rebounds per contest, while Johnston paces the team with 3.9 assists per game.
Head Coach Jay Spoonhour is in his fourth year at Eastern Illinois and his fifth as a collegiate head coach. He built a 42-61 record at Eastern Illinois and compiled a 6-4 record at UNLV during the 2003-04 season at season. after his father, Charlie Spoonhour, stepped down as head coach late that season.
Saturday's game will be the first time that Spoonhour has faced Houston.
Following Saturday's game, the Cougars advance to the Global Sports Classic Third and Championship Rounds inside Cox Pavilion in Las Vegas.
Houston meets Grand Canyon at 7 p.m. (CST) Monday, before closing out the tournament against the winner/loser of the Marshall-Wyoming game on Tuesday.
The Cougars return to the friendly confines of Hofheinz Pavilion when they close out their non-conference schedule against Nicholls State at 1 p.m., Dec. 28, inside Hofheinz Pavilion.
Fans can receive the latest news and notes by following @UHCougarMBK on Twitter. Fans also can discuss the latest Houston Men's Basketball news and notes on the team's Facebook page by clicking LIKE at HoustonCougarMensHoops.