Columbia’s a middle of the road team so this should be a win for the Coogs before conference play begins.
23-17 Coogs after 1.
34-27 Coogs at the half. Hit a cold spell in the 2nd that allowed Columbia to tie it, but the defense clamped down and the Coogs ended the half on a 9-2 Run.
Houston: Houston had four players in double figures, including a game-high 19 from Serithia Hawkins. Jasmyne Harris just missed a triple-double with 16 points, nine rebounds and nine assists, while Angela Harris added 14 points, and Dorian Branch scored 10. Myyah West tied with Jasmyne Harris for the team lead on the glass with nine rebounds each.
Columbia: The Lions saw just two players reach double figures, including a team-high 13 from Camille Zimmerman. Maya Sampleton added 12 points, while Madison Pack paced Columbia on the boards with seven rebounds.
NEWS AND NOTES
With the victory, Houston improved to 1-0 all-time against Columbia.
The win over the Lions gives Houston its 11th win of the season and matches the most wins in the non-conference season in program history since conference play began. The mark ties the 2003-04 team.
Houston’s 11-3 record, marks the best start since the 2004-05 team started 14-3 in a season that saw the Cougars make the NCAA Tournament.
With 14 points in the contest, sophomore Angela Harris joined the 500-point club and now has 509 in her career. Harris also finished the contest with four steals after entering the game 11th in the nation and first in the American Athletic Conference in steals per game (3.56).
With 16 points against the Lions, sophomore Jasmyne Harris now has 601 points in her career. Harris also pulled down nine rebounds in the contest, giving her 256 in just 1.5 years. Harris also finished the game with a career-best nine assists.
Houston won four of the five specialty point battles, outscoring Columbia 26-16 in the paint, 27-11 off turnovers, 13-8 on second chance points and 4-0 on the fast break. The Lions edged the Cougars 14-13 in bench points.
Junior forward Myyah West matched a career-high with nine rebounds in the contest.
Now that non-conference is over, here’s my thoughts.
This team is very tough at home and didn’t lose once there in non-conference play.
Team isn’t afraid to shoot from anywhere and put up a massive number of threes. They hit 32% of them, which isn’t great, but they hit around 7 a game which is close to being in the top 50 in the country.
The defense is the calling card though as they are among the top 10 in steals per game and employ a full court press that usually starts in the second half and can completely overwhelm opponents. Columbia had no answer as the Coogs literally just took the ball out of their hands on possession after possession tonight.
Struggles seem to come on the road or against teams with skilled post players. Coogs just don’t have someone that can really guard big girls down low; although Serethia Hawkins stepped up and shut down George Mason’s post who had been killing the Coogs early.
The AAC seems to consist of UCONN in tier 1, USF in Tier 2, and then UCF/Houston/Tulane in Tier 3 with everyone else. Good news for the Coogs, they only have to play UCONN, USF, and UCF once this year as the conference felt that the Coogs were going to finish last (surprising since they didn’t finish last a season ago and had a number of players back). Coogs probably aren’t going to beat UCONN or win at USF, but every other game on their schedule is winnable with the way they’re playing. First big test will come on January 6th when they travel to New Orleans to play Tulane.