Get your brooms out Clifton! Despite only taking 11 shots the entire first half, the Cats put up 42 points in the second half and left Dallas, Texas with the W. SMU has won 16 of their last 18 games – both of those losses came at the hands of UC. This one happened in front of Tony Romo courtside. Bob Knight said it best: “Cincinnati is almost automatic when scoring 60.”
Jermaine Sanders was the player of the game, going 6-10 from the field for 15 points. He had 9 boards, 1 assist, 1 steal, and played solid D all night long. Sanders stepped up as a senior leader on the road when he was certainly needed.
Caupain also added 14 points, going 4-6 from the field, and a ridiculous 3-3 from 3-point range, with 4 rebounds and 4 assists. Cobb contributed a much needed 14 points, and Thomas another 8. In typical steady fashion, Ellis lit up the stat sheet with 7 boards, 6 points, 4 blocks, and 2 assists.
Despite an abysmal start with just 20 points and a whopping 13 turnovers, the Cats ended the game shooting 56.8% from the field and 58.3% from 3, racking up more than the magic number of 60 by night’s end.
UC’s defense held the Mustangs’ point guard Mic Moore to just 8 points. As a team, SMU shot the ball just 36.5% on the game and 21.4% from beyond the arch. While losing the turnover battle 17-9, the Cats out-rebounded SMU 32-25, and made buckets when they mattered most to escape with this valuable road win.
This was a must win as UC inches closer to the top of the American, and the Bearcats’ first victory over a ranked opponent this year. The Cats are currently in 3rd place behind SMU (2 losses to UC) and Tulsa (10-0 in AAC).
We also had a scare late in the second half when Ellis bent over and fell to the floor clutching his knee. Luckily, all is good with #2.
Next up UC (16-6, 7-3 American) faces USF (7-16, 1-9 American) at home Saturday night at 8 pm ET. This should be an “easy” game, but you never know, as we saw in Greenville against ECU.
By Andy Smith