Feb. 2, 2012
HOUSTON (SMU) - Akil Simpson scored 17 points with seven rebounds to lead SMU to a 63-50 victory over Houston on the road Thursday night, completing the season sweep of the Cougars. With the win, SMU improved to 12-9 overall and 5-3 in Conference USA, while Houston fell to 2-18, 1-7 in C-USA.
Simpson made a career-high eight field goals in the win, and SMU connected on eight 3-pointers to take the double-digit victory. The Mustangs grabbed 43 rebounds, led by Simpson and Raven Short, who each pulled down seven, while Houston finished with 34 rebounds. Alisha Filmore finished with nine points, and Samantha Mahnesmith added eight.
SMU finished the game shooting 40.4-percent from the field, 23-of-57, including 8-of-22 from 3-point range, while Houston connected on 32.7-percent of field goals, 17-of-52. The Mustangs blocked six shots, matching the second highest total of the season.
Simpson scored the first eight points for SMU, giving the Mustangs' their first lead of the game, 8-7 with 12:59 left in the first half. After starting the half 0-for-8 from the field, the Mustangs found their shot, finishing 11-of-16, including a 3-pointer with six seconds left by Mallory Singleton to stretch the lead to 10.
SMU held the Cougars to a 6-of-28 performance in the first half, including allowing just three points to Roxana Button, the league's leading scorer. The Mustangs held a 22-17 advantage off the glass, and went 6-for-7 from the free throw line.
The Cougars cut the lead to three, 39-36, midway through the second half, but SMU answered defensively and got hot beyond the arc to stretch the lead back to double-digits, taking a 47-37 lead on Short's 3-pointer with 7:33 left in the game. SMU continued to stretch the lead, holding Houston to just two field goals in the final three minutes for the 13-point victory. Button had just two points in the second half to finish with five.
SMU will close out the two-game road trip at Tulane on Sunday at 2 p.m. in New Orleans, La. The game will be broadcast live on KAAM 770. For more information, log on to www.smumustangs.com.