Jan. 11, 2012
BIRMINGHAM, Ala. ---- Marshall's Robert Goff converted a 3-point play with 41 seconds left, which proved to be the difference as the Thundering Herd escaped Bartow Arena with a 61-59 victory against UAB on Wednesday night.
The difference of the game was on the boards as Marshall (12-4. 3-0 C-USA) claimed a 45-34 advantage on the glass, including 21 offensive rebounds which resulted in 20 second chance points for the Herd.
"All we talked about leading up to this game was rebounding," UAB head coach Mike Davis said. "We knew it was going to be a physical game, just like Saturday at Southern Miss will be physical. We knew what the keys to this game were and we didn't execute down the stretch. It's frustrating, but at the same time, you have to know what to do in order to win games."
UAB (5-10, 0-2) led 53-46 after an Ovie Soko jumper with 8:08 remaining, but Marshall embarked on a 10-0 run, including back-to-back treys from Shaquille Johnson and DeAndre Kane to hold a 56-53 edge with just over five minutes to play in the contest.
With 1:53 left on the clock, Cameron Moore sank a jumper to give the Blazers a 59-58 lead, but Goff's 3-point play ended up being the game-winning basket as the Blazers were unable to convert down the stretch, missing their final three shots.
Moore finished with a game-high 22 points, tying his season-high, making 9 of 19 from the field, while adding seven rebounds. Soko notched a season-high with 18 points, draining 8 of 11 shots including his first seven. He added 11 rebounds for his team-leading fifth double-double of the season.
UAB outshot the Herd from the floor, 41.4 percent to 39.7 percent, but rebounding and second-chance points proved to be the difference in the game.
Kane was the lone Marshall player in double figures with 21 points and added 10 rebounds for a double-double. Forward Dennis Tinnon was a menace on the glass grabbing a career-high 19 boards, nine of which were offensive.
"It was another war," Marshall head coach Tom Herrion. "UAB is really playing well. I know it is not reflected in their record, but they are one of the most complete teams in our conference. I am really proud of our group. We played from behind, and we just kept grinding. We played through adversity and fouls. Some things did not go our way, and offensively we did not finish in the game. We showed good character and commitment."
The Blazers led by as much as 10 points in the first half as Marshall was held to just one basket, a Pitts trey, through the first five minutes of the game. In the opening stanza, Moore and Soko combined to score 23 of UAB's 31 first half points.
UAB is back on the court on Saturday, Jan. 14 with a trip to Hattiesburg, Miss. to play Southern Miss. Tipoff is slated for 1 p.m. and will air on Fox Sports Network.