Sharp Shooting Leads UAB To 76-71 Win At Tulane

UABSPORTS.COM Rod Rucker posted a season-high 26 points
UABSPORTS.COM
Rod Rucker posted a season-high 26 points
UABSPORTS.COM

Feb. 27, 2013

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NEW ORLEANS ---- Rod Rucker and Jordan Swing combined to score 49 points and the UAB men's basketball team shot a season-best 58.5 percent to defeat Tulane on the road, 76-71, at Devlin Fieldhouse on Wednesday night.

The win improved UAB to 14-14 overall and 6-7 in league play as the Blazers have now won three in a row and five of their last six contests.

Rucker poured in a career-high 26 points, including 18 in the first half, on 13 of 17 shooting and added six rebounds.

Swing finished one assist shy of a triple-double, posting 23 points, 10 rebounds and nine assists and made nine of 12 attempts, including tying a career-high with five 3-pointers in the win.

UAB shot a blistering 58.5 percent for the night, including 66.7 percent in the second half, while holding Tulane (18-10, 6-7 C-USA) to just 33.8 percent from the floor.  The Blazers also outrebounded the Green Wave, 41 to 29.

The Blazers have now held the opposition to under 40 percent from the field in five of the last six halves, as the Green Wave made just 24.2 percent of its tries in the opening stanza.

Trailing 14-10 at the 10:46 mark in the first half, UAB exploded on a 20-6 run to hold a 10-point edge, 30-20 with just under three minutes to play prior to intermission.

Tulane pulled within six, 32-26, on a Ricky Tarrant layup, but Quincy Taylor answered with a basket of his own to send the Blazers up 34-26 at the half.

In the first half, Rucker had 18 points on 9-of-11 shooting and scored UAB's first eight points of the game. Along with Swing's 11 points, the duo combined for 29 of the Blazers' 34 first-half points.

The Blazers expanded their lead in the second half to as large 16 with 13:48 left after a layup by Fahro Alihodzic, who finished with nine points all in the second stanza.

The 3-point shot brought the Green Wave back in the game, as the home squad buried 8-of-16 second half attempts from beyond the arc, including three from Jordan Callahan.

Tulane fought back and finally took the lead, 57-56, on a Louis Dabney bucket and would stretch its advantage to four points on a Jay Hook 3-pointer with 5:30 left.

A bucket by Taylor and consecutive treys from Swing, allowed the Blazers to retake the lead, back up by four (64-60) and would hold the lead the rest of the way. Down the stretch, UAB made 6-of-7 free throws, with all six makes coming from Preston Purifoy.

Tarrant paced the Green Wave offense with 25 points, while Josh Davis added 13 boards.

UAB looks for its fourth straight victory by hosting SMU at Bartow Arena on Saturday. Game time is set for 2 p.m. CT.