"I was really proud of the effort," said Houston head coach Ray McCallum. "We competed down to the end tonight and we got a solid performance from a lot of players.
|Bernard Smith's desperation shot at the buzzer misses and LSU hangs on for a one point victory over Houston.|
The Cougars trailed 32-24 at half-time, but came storming back and led 53-49 with 4:58 left to play. LSU closed to within one when Lamont Roland nailed a three-pointer from the top of the key to make the score 53-52 with 3:32 left to play. George Williams scored on a layup on Houston's next possession to increase the Cougars' lead to 55-52 with three minutes remaining.
On LSU's next possession, Collis Temple missed a jump shot and Ronald DuPree grabbed the offensive rebound. DuPree was fouled by Alton Ford on the follow shot as Ford tried to block his shot. DuPree made one of his two free throws to pull the Tigers to within 55-53 with 2:51 left to play.
On Houston's next possession, Ford was fouled by Roland and made one of his two free throws to give Houston a 56-53 lead with 2:28 left to play.
Roland redeemed himself when he made a three-pointer after lsu had called time out. Then, he gave the Tigers a 57-56 lead when he made one of his two free throws with 1:26 left to play.
Roland missed his second free throw and Brian Beshara grabbed the offensive rebound. But, Bernard Smith stole a pass by Bright and drove down for a layup to give the Cougars a 58-57 lead with 1:14 left to play.
Both teams turned the ball over on their next possessions before Chad Hendrick before Chad Hendrick was fouled with 28 seconds left to play. Hendrick made his first free throw to give the Cougars a 59-57 lead. But, he missed the second, and Brian Beshara tied the game with his only two points of the night when he nailed a jumper from the left baseline with 16 second left.
Houston had the ball and Bernard Smith drove down to the left baseline with nine seconds left..
"On our last possession we knew that we were going for the last shot," said McCallum. "We had the ball in the hands of our point guard. He had a good look. Unfortunately, it didn't fall in the basket."
But, Smith missed a 10-foot jump shot and set up Bright's winning basket. The loss drops Houston's record to 2-3 overall this season while LSU remains undefeated with a 3-0 record.
Houston will travel to Storrs, Conn. to play 12-ranked Connecticut on Thursday, November 30.