It was a busy weekend in the world of C-USA hoops, and unlike the weekday games, there were no real surprises. Memphis continues to roll, UAB bounces back from their mid-week date with Memphis, UCF continues to slump, and Tulsa, Houston, and Tulane take care of business.
Memphis throttles Southern Miss (Memphis, TN)— The Memphis Tigers won their nation best 20th consecutive game as they pounded the Southern Miss Golden Eagles, 58-42. Senior forward Robert Dozier led the team with 18 points and grabbed seven rebounds, as the Tigers played their second game in less than 48 hours.
"Guys are tired," Dozier said. "You could see it in their faces. You could [sense] it in the mood in the locker room. We pushed through it, and we played great enough defense to get the W. That's all the matters."
Memphis (26-3, 14-0 C-USA) won their 20th consecutive game and their 55th consecutive game in C-USA. Southern Miss (14-14, 4-10) has dropped three consecutive games and has lost eight of their last nine.
A Golden Hurricane Blows through Texas (Dallas, TX)— The Tulsa Golden Hurricane took care of business against last place SMU, as they rallied for a 74-64 victory. SMU held a 38-29 lead at halftime before being dominated 45-26 in the second half. Senior forward Ray Reese led the team with 24 points, and junior guard Ben Uzoh chipped in with 20 points for Tulsa. Freshman guard Paul McCoy led SMU with 16 points.
Tulsa (20-9, 10-4 C-USA) has won three games in a row and eight of their last 10. SMU (8-19, 2-12 C-USA) has lost two in a row and five of their last six.
Blazers Bounce Back on the Road (Greenville, NC)— UAB broke open a tied game at halftime to outscore ECU, 48-28 in the second half. The Blazers were led by senior guard Robert Vaden and freshman forward Cameron Moore, who each scored 18 points. ECU was led by sophomore forward Jamar Abrams, who scored 18 points and grabbed 10 rebounds.
UAB (20-9, 10-4 C-USA) has won seven of their last eight games, while ECU (13-15, 5-10 C-USA) has dropped four straight.
Cougars Rally to Take Down Cross-town Rival (Houston, TX)— The Houston Cougars got all they could handle from the 11th place Rice Owls, as Houston held on for a 56-51 victory. The Owls had their eyes set on another upset as they led by one with 2:28 remaining, before Houston guard Aubrey Coleman scored four consecutive points to put the Cougars up for good. Coleman led Houston with 12 points and 12 rebounds. Rice was led by center Trey Stanton, who bucketed 18 points and grabbed 10 boards in the defensive struggle.
Houston (18-9, 9-5 C-USA) has won two of their last three games, while Rice (9-19, 4-10) has dropped four of their last five games, but is playing much better.
Knights Fall Flat at Marshall (Huntington, WV)— The Marshall Thundering Herd continued their fine play by defeating C-USA leading scorer Jermaine Taylor and UCF, 67-62. Marshall led for much of the game and overcame a 28-point effort by the Knights Jermaine Taylor. Marshall was led by freshman guard Damier Pitts, who scored 21 points on 5-10 shooting, and made all seven free throw attempts.
Marshall (14-15, 6-8 C-USA) has won three of their last four games, while UCF (16-12, 6-8 C-USA) has lost six of their last seven.
Green Wave Strong at Home (New Orleans, LA)— The Tulane Green Wave won their second straight home game as they defeated UTEP, 86-77. Tulane led from the early moments of the game until the final buzzer, as they were fueled by an early 10-1 run. Junior guard Kevin Sims led the Green Wave with 22 points, while UTEP was paced by C-USA all-time leading scorer Stefon Jackson’s 23 points and Randy Culpepper’s 22 points.
Tulane (13-15, 7-8 C-USA) has won three straight games, while UTEP (17-11, 8-6 C-USA) has lost two of their last three.