HOUSTON, TEXAS - The University of Houston Lady Cougars extended their season-high winning streak to five straight and won their fourth-consecutive game over a Conference USA opponent for the first time in school history as they took down the Memphis Lady Tigers by a final of 80-77 on Friday night (January 26) at Hofheinz Pavilion.
The Lady Cougars improved to 13-6 overall on the season and 6-1 in C-USA play. The win snapped their winless (0-8) streak against the Lady Tigers and marks the first time Houston has won five consecutive games since a six-game winning streak during the 1994-95 season. In addition, their five straight victories marks the first time since a 12-game stretch during the 1991-92 campaign.
Leading the Houston offensive attack tonight was once again lead by All American and C-USA Freshman of the Year candidate Chandi Jones, as she paced the Lady Cougars with a game-high 30 points. Jones shot 11-of-23 on the night, including 6-of-7 of her free throw attempts, pulled down four boards and had three assists and three steals. Jones has now recorded 30 or more points in three times and has scored 20-or-more points 13 of Houston's 19 games this season.
Joining Jones in double digits in points were senior Cathy Lida with 12 points and senior ShaRonda Lasseter, who shot 4-of-7 for 10 points. Senior Jessica Shanklin had a game-high nine assists.
The game went back-and-forth between Houston and Memphis right from tip-off in the first half as both schools capitalized on turnovers--13 by the Lady Tigers and 12 by the Lady Cougars. Memphis' Tiffany Adkins, an All American candidate, poured in ten first-half points while her counterpart Jones scored 11 as the two schools entered half-time deadlocked at 35-35.
Both schools came out strong in the second half and again went back-and-forth in scoring. Two three-point field goals by Shanklin helped the Lady Cougars increase their lead in the closing minutes of the game, before Memphis once again came back. After Memphis tied the score at 75-75 with 3:07 remaining, Jones nailed a two-pointer for a 77-75 lead with 2:38 left. In the closing seconds of the game, as Houston held on to their two-point lead, two Lady Tiger fouls took Jones to the free throw line four times and she made three of her attempts to make the score 80-75. A lay-up by Memphis' Melissa Abraham with no time left made the score 80-77. The Lady Cougars return to action at home on Sunday afternoon, January 28, as they host UAB at Hofheinz Pavilion. Tip-off is scheduled for 2:00pm.