EditorsNote: 2nd update: Grammar and style fixes to 11th graf
Corey Davis Jr. scored 22 points and No. 11 Houston used a 45-20 second half to destroy the ninth-seeded Connecticut Huskies 84-45 in the quarterfinals of the American Athletic Conference tournament Friday in Memphis.
The top-seeded Cougars (30-2) held UConn without a field goal for nearly 13 minutes in the second half to turn a 14-point halftime lead into a laugher. UConn ends its season at 16-17.
Three other players finished in double figures for Houston: Galen Robinson (16 points), Armoni Brooks (11 points, eight rebounds) and Nate Hinton (15).
The Cougars reached 30 wins for the fourth time in school history, and the first time since 1983-84.
Jalen Adams had 15 points and 10 rebounds and Josh Carlton added 13 points and 11 boards for the Huskies. Adams finished five points shy of becoming the AAC’s all-time leading scorer.
Carlton’s layup at the 17:20 mark cut the lead to 12, but was the Huskies’ last field goal until reserve Eric Cobb’s layup with 3:52 left in the game.
After Carlton’s layup, the Cougars scored six points in transition in a little over a minute and the rout was on. Houston scored 22 fastbreak points to blitz the Huskies.
The Cougars will play Memphis in the AAC semifinals on Saturday, after the Tigers routed UCF 79-55 later Friday.
Davis hit four 3-pointers and scored 15 points to give the Cougars a 39-25 halftime lead.
The Cougars used two 11-0 runs to quickly separate themselves from the Huskies. Davis connected on a four-point play 23 seconds into the game to jumpstart Houston, 4-0.
Brooks added nine points and five rebounds in the half. Davis and Brooks combined for 24 points in the half, nearly matching UConn’s team total.
After the Huskies closed the lead to two with 9:30 to play before intermission, the Cougars went off on another 11-0 run to take a 29-16 lead with 5:31 left. The Huskies went four minutes without scoring a point in the run.
Connecticut made just 3 of 26 attempts (11.5 percent) from 3-point range and shot 25.9 percent overall.
—Field Level Media