Dec. 3, 2004
EVANSTON, Ill. - The inside-outside presence of Sancho Lyttle and Joann Overstreet proved too much to handle for Northwestern University, as the #24 University of Houston Lady Cougars remained perfect on the season with a 78-56 win on the opening day of the Mildred and Roger L. White Invitational.
Lyttle recorded her fifth double-double of the season with a game-high 23 points and 11 rebounds, while Overstreet chipped in a double-double of her own, racking up 12 assists and 10 boards to go along with seven steals and six points. Daphne Andre came off the bench to score 17, including three-for-five beyond the arc.
The Lady Cougars improve to 7-0 on the season, while Northwestern drops to 1-5. Houston also ran its winning streak on the road to 14 games dating back to a 65-52 loss to Georgia one year to the day.
It took about five minutes for the Lady Cougars to warm up, holding just a 8-6 advantage at the 14:39 mark of the first half. Houston then went on a 15-7 run to build a 10-point lead, 23-13, and the Lady Cougars would never lose their double-digit lead. UH took the lead from the outset when Crystal Simpson nailed a jumper and made the front end of a two-shot foul.
The Lady Cougars took a 37-24 halftime lead when Overstreet nailed two free throws. Northwestern had sliced the UH lead to just 11, after Houston had pushed its lead to 15, 30-15, on two free throws by Shannon Steele with a little over six minutes to play. Both teams traded baskets down the stretch before Overstreet hit her charity tosses with just four seconds left before halftime.
Houston increased its lead to 18 at the 15:12 mark of the second half, when Lyttle scored a layup on an assist from Andre. The Lady Cougars finished the half with a flourish, outscoring the Wildcats 20-12 down the stretch. UH head coach Joe Curl emptied his bench as time was winding down to prepare for tomorrow afternoon's 1 pm game with Virginia.
For the game the Lady Cougars shot 44.1 percent from the field, including 33.3 percent from beyond the arc. UH forced 23 Northwestern turnovers and racked up 16 total steals. Houston held the Wildcats to just 36 percent shooting in the first half.