Hughey era begins with Cougars’ strong showing
In the first official game under head coach Ronald Hughey, the Houston women’s basketball team gave a strong defensive effort that sparked a 46-42 victory over North Texas in Denton Friday night.
Following a strong exhibition game against the Huston-Tillotson Rams, the Cougars (1-0) continued their strong defensive play, forcing the Mean Green (0-1) into 22 turnovers and holding them to 27.1 shooting percentage in the game.
After falling behind 14-15, the Cougars went on a 17-4 run during the final 11:44 of the first half while holding the Mean Green to only one field goal, building up a 12 point lead that would never be surrendered.
“We defended hard, and we did a great job pressuring North Texas,” Hughey said in a release.
Junior forward Tyler Gilbert and junior guard Alecia Smith led the Cougars scoring efforts with 10 points each, and Gilbert added 9 rebounds, 1 shy of her first career double-double.
Gilbert provided a big spark to the Cougars in the second half, scoring eight points and picking up five rebounds following the intermission.
The Cougars dominated on the glass, out-rebounding North Texas 48-32, leading to 14 second-chance points and stopping multiple potential North Texas rallies.
“We really took North Texas out of their rhythm with our relentless pressure, and solid rebounding also carried us to the win,” Hughey said in a release.
Coming off a season in which the Cougars only held their opponents under 30 percent shooting one time in 31 games, the team equaled that total in only the first game of this season.
Houston will look to continue its strong defensive start Monday as they host Incarnate Word at 7 p.m. Monday night in the home opener at Hofheinz Pavilion.