Big First Half Lifts UAB By Tulsa, 70-63

UABSPORTS.COM Rod Rucker finished with a team-high 17 points on 7-of-10 shooting
UABSPORTS.COM
Rod Rucker finished with a team-high 17 points on 7-of-10 shooting
UABSPORTS.COM

Feb. 6, 2013

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TULSA, Okla. ---- Utilizing a 30-4 run in the early part of the first half, the UAB men's basketball team knocked off Tulsa at the Reynolds Center, 70-63, on Wednesday night.

UAB (10-13, 2-6 C-USA) trailed 9-7 with 15:32 left in the opening half, when the Blazers broke the game open with a 30-4 run to own a 24 point lead.  Not only was the Blazer offense effective during that stretch making 11-of-19 shots off nine assists, the defense held Tulsa (12-11, 4-5 C-USA) without a field goal for over 12 minutes.

"I thought our guys in the first 15 minutes of the game played our best basketball of the year," head coach Jerod Haase said.  "We were extremely unselfish. We were turning down good shots to get great shots and we knocked them in as well. Defensively, I thought physically we were into the game and played hard and mentally we were really thinking the game on the defensive end."

Up 37-13 with 4:45 remaining in the half, the Golden Hurricane used a rally of its own, pulling within single digits with a minute to play. Terence Jones buried a 3-pointer to beat the halftime buzzer and send the Blazers up 43-31 into the locker room.

Tulsa shrunk the Blazers lead to as small as four, 56-52, with 9:04 left, but a Quincy Taylor layup put UAB back up 10 with just under three minutes to go to help secure the team's first league road victory of the season.

Rod Rucker topped the Blazers with 17 points off 7-of-10 shooting and added six rebounds.  Teammate Quincy Taylor shined in his first start of the season, netting 14 points and dished out a season-high six assists.

Jones came off the bench to chip in 13 points, 11 coming in the first half.

UAB shot 54.5 percent overall, featuring a 60.7 shooting mark in the first half. In addition, UAB made 9-of-20 3-point tries and held Tulsa to just 38.5 percent shooting for the game.

Rashad Ray paced the Golden Hurricane offense with a team-high 17 points.

The Blazers return home on Saturday to host the Marshall Thundering Herd at 2 p.m. CT inside Bartow Arena.