Blazing First Half Leads UAB Past Houston, 80-69

Cameron Moore had a season-high 25 points to go along with 13 boards and five blocked shots.

Feb. 1, 2012

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BIRMINGHAM, Ala. ---- UAB lit up the scoreboard for 50 points in the first half and held on to defeat the Houston Cougars, 80-69, at Bartow Arena on Wednesday night in Conference USA men's basketball action.

"I think we played our best first half of the season," UAB head coach Mike Davis said. "We hit some baskets in that first half. The execution was there and we made some shots. We played with a lot of energy and it showed up with the result."

UAB (8-13, 3-5 C-USA) was locked in on offense throughout the opening stanza, making 19 of 36 shots (52.8 percent) to hold a commanding 50-34 edge heading into the locker room. The 50-point outburst was the most scored by the Blazers in a half this season, and the highest total since UAB put up 50 at Rice, nearly a year to the day, on Feb. 6, 2011.

The Blazers utilized a substantial scoring spurt to take hold of the game prior to half time. With the score knotted at 12, UAB used a 36-15 rally against Houston (11-10, 3-5) to own its largest advantage of the contest (21 points) with 3:24 left, following a Cameron Moore basket.

During the impressive first half shooting display, the Blazers sank eight of 13 attempts from beyond the arc. Quincy Taylor proved to be the primary 3-point sniper, finding the bottom of the net a career-high four times.

Up 16 points at the half, UH fought back into the game, cutting the deficit to as small as five - 63-58 - with 8:47 remaining, but the Blazers would hold on thanks to a balanced scoring attack the rest of the way.

Moore led all scorers with a season-high 25 points, while adding 13 rebounds for his eighth double-double of the season and fourth in his last five contests. Moore now has 22 career double-doubles, which moves him into a tie for second on the school's all-time list (Lawrence Kinnard).

Ovie Soko also posted a double-double (15 points, 11 rebounds), while Preston Purifoy notched 15 of his own, featuring three 3-point baskets.

The fourth player to reach double figures was Taylor, scoring all 12 of his points in the first half. Fellow guard Robert Williams also filled up the box score with five points, six rebounds and four assists in the victory.

All in total, the Blazers sank 10 3-pointers on 18 shots, as five different players drained a shot from downtown.

UH also featured four players in double figures, led by Jonathon Simmons and Alandise Harris' 17-point outings. TaShawn Thomas posted a double-double, netting 16 and adding 14 rebounds.

UAB hits the road for its next game to El Paso, Texas, to play the UTEP Miners on Saturday, Feb. 4. Tipoff is slated for 8 p.m. CT