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Volume 68, Issue 82, January 27, 2003


Cougars clip Eagles late

Cougar Sports Staff

One game doesnit qualify as a streak, but after falling to a season-low 3-11, winning two-of-three games is the closest the Cougars have come to being on a run. Saturdayis win at Southern Miss may have been the teamis most important of the season as UH improved to 4-11 (2-2 in Conference USA). Southern Miss fell to 9-7 (2-3 in C-USA).

Senior forward Louis Truscottis late layup gave the Cougars a 76-75 win over Southern Miss on Saturday.

Brian Viney/The Daily Cougar

Senior forward Louis Truscott has been a consistent banger this year and has been among the best rebounders in college basketball, but his 18 rebounds paled in comparison to two crucial points.

Down by one with just 11 seconds left to play, Truscott scored off an underneath pass to give the Cougars a 76-75 lead. Southern Miss senior guard Mario Myles had one last shot, but missed as UH held on for the win. Truscott played for nearly the entire game (38 minutes) and shot over 50 percent (8-of-14) from the field.

The Cougars had a 74-70 lead with 37 seconds to go, but Myles single-handedly gave the Golden Eagles the lead, scoring off two free throws to cut the lead to two. He then stole the inbound pass, was fouled on a layup and converted the three-point play.

His missed shot as time expired kept Myles from being the hero.

"Give Houston a lot of credit," Southern Miss head coach. "They played with great determination, and did what they had to do to win."

USM held a 12-point lead early in the first half at 20-8. Led by the guard duo of sophomore Andre Owens and freshman Cedrick Hensley, the Cougars went on a 21-8 run to close out the first half with a 37-35 lead.

For the game, Hensley finished with 16 points off 5-of-8 shooting while Owens scored 15 and made 8-of-8 free throws. Each scored nine in the first half. The Cougars shot 48 percent from the field as a team.

"We played well for part of the first half," Green said. "We didnit play as well for much of the second half."

Houston continued its run by increasing its lead to 15 at 63-48 -- but it didnit stick. The Golden Eagles went on a 19-6 run to get to within two, 71-69, with less than two minutes to play. The Cougars increased their lead back to four before finally holding on for the win.

Despite Mylesi late heroics, USM was led by sophomore David Haywood, junior Greg Johnson and freshman Jasper Johnson, each with 15 points. Jasper Johnson scored 11 of those in the first half. He also contributed a team-leading nine rebounds on the night.

The Cougars host South Florida in an ESPN Plus game at 8 p.m. Wednesday.

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