Houston Drops 63-61 Thriller To SMU On Senior Night

    Sha'Ratta Hawkins tied for the game high with 20 points as UH dropped a 63-61 heartbreaker to SMU on Sunday.
    Sha'Ratta Hawkins tied for the game high with 20 points as UH dropped a 63-61 heartbreaker to SMU on Sunday.
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    Feb. 19, 2006

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    HOUSTON - A last-second jumper in the paint by Tye Jackson (Houston, Texas/Westfield HS/Purdue) came up short as the University of Houston women's basketball team dropped a 63-61 decision to SMU in Conference USA play on senior night at Hofheinz Pavilion Sunday.

    Emily Fryters (Adelaide, Australia/Concordia College) who had five rebounds, four points and two steals on the night, was honored in a postgame ceremony. She is the team's lone senior.

    After a UH timeout with 10 seconds left, Jackson had the ball at the top of the key, faking left and going right towards the basket. SMU's defense collapsed inside and Jackson's jumper ended up in the hands of SMU's Janielle Dodds as the buzzer sounded.

    Houston (9-16, 6-8 C-USA), down by 12 at two times during the game, dropped its fifth-straight contest while SMU (14-12, 9-5 C-USA) swept a season series over the Cougars for the first time since 1994.

    SMU held on for the win despite having more turnovers (24) then made field goals (23). UH converted those giveaways into 22 points. UH also controlled the inside game, winning the battle of points in the paint (26-20), offensive rebounds (13-11) and second-chance points (11-0). The Mustangs finished the game 10 for 18 (.556) from behind the arc, missing just four triples in each half.

    Trailing 46-34 with 11:51 left in the game, a jumper by Ryan Meyers (Arlington, Texas/Arlington HS/Grayson County CC) with 11:22 left started a 21-5 UH rally over a period of 7:26 that gave Houston a 55-51 advantage with 3:34 left. During that span, SMU was 0 for 8 from the floor with four turnovers.

     

     

    The teams exchanged fire, with Sarah Davis of SMU draining a three and Nakazi Glover (Brookshire, Texas/Bellaire HS) knocking down a jumper on consecutive possessions, dropping UH's lead to three, 57-54, with 3:02 left. The Mustang's Katie Gross hit a triple of her own the next time down the floor to square things up at 57 apiece with 2:46 left.

    The next time down the floor, Jackson missed a three and Glover came up with the rebound. With the shot clock winding down, Glover threw the ball outside to Sha'Ratta Hawkins (Houston, Texas/Jesse Jones HS) who threw up an off-balance prayer that bounced off the rim and was whistled dead by the officials as a shot-clock violation. However, video replays showed the Hawkins shot was released in time and the Cougars got the ball back on the alternating possession.

    After a Hawkins jumper failed to connect, SMU's Dodds put SMU up for good with her 12-footer. Dodds converted a three-point play the next time down the floor to put SMU up five, 62-57, with 47 seconds to go. Houston pulled within two as Hawkins hit a pair of free throws with 27 ticks left on the clock. SMU's Kendall Shead was fouled on the inbounds pass and missed the front end of a 1-and-1, setting up UH's last-second effort.

    Hawkins and SMU's Gross tied for the game high with 20 points apiece, while Dodds pulled down a game-high 12 rebounds. Jackson finished with 17 and Glover added 11.

    Houston trailed 32-27 at the half on the heels of an abysmal shooting effort in the first 20 minutes. The Cougars were 9 for 31 (.290) from the field and 1 for 5 (.200) in the first half. An 8 for 10 effort from the charity stripe in the half enabled UH to keep things close.

    UH heads back on the road to close out the regular season. The Cougars face Memphis on Friday at 7 p.m. CST before squaring off with UAB on Sunday at 2 p.m. The C-USA Women's Basketball Championship runs from March 2-5 in Dallas at SMU's Moody Coliseum..

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