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Friday, August 19, 2022

Football

UH knocks off No. 19 SMU in a thriller


Junior wide receiver Jeremy Singleton breaks loose for a 55-yard catch and run on UH's opening possession of the game against SMU on Saturday night at TDECU Stadium. | James Schillinger/The Cougar

Junior wide receiver Jeremy Singleton breaks loose for a 55-yard catch and run on UH’s opening possession of the game against SMU on Saturday night at TDECU Stadium. | James Schillinger/The Cougar

Riding a six-game win streak, Houston made it seven wins in a row by knocking off No. 19 SMU 44-37 at TDECU Stadium on Saturday. 

The Mustangs, coming into the game ranked No. 19, played the Cougars on a cool night in a game that could decide who represents the AAC in the conference championship. 

Marching down the field on the game’s opening possession, the Cougars scored on a 9-play, 78-yard drive capped off by a 7-yard Tune touchdown pass to sophomore receiver Nathaniel Dell to put the Cougars up early.

The Dell and Tune duo pushed the Cougars to a 14-0 lead on a 48-yard touchdown pass.

The Cougars continued to dominate the first quarter as senior kicker Dalton Witherspoon hit a season-long 50-yard field goal to give the Cougars a 17-0 lead.

A 43-yard touchdown pass from SMU quarterback Tanner Mordecai put the Mustangs on the board as the first quarter drew to a close. 

Following a Cougar turnover on downs, SMU needed just one play to score as 50 yard Mordecai touchdown brought the Mustangs within 7. 

After SMU found the end zone once again late in the half, a blocked SMU extra point kept the game tied at 20-20.

The Cougars marched down the field to kick a field goal as the half expired, taking a 23-20 lead into the locker room.

Opening up the half, a 100-yard kickoff return gave the Mustangs their first lead of the day, as they went up 27-23. 

An 11-play 72-yard drive capped off with a 17-yard touchdown pass to Dell, his third score of the night, gave the Cougars the lead back with 9:22 left in the 3rd. 

The Mustangs responded with a downfield drive of their own, retaking the lead 34-30 late in the 3rd. 

The UH offense responded as Tune threw his fourth touchdown of the night, this time connecting with junior receiver KeSean Carter for a 4-yard score to give the Cougars a 37-34 lead minutes into the fourth quarter. 

SMU tied the game on a 45-yard field goal with 30 seconds left.

On the very next play, senior Marcus Jones once again dazzled in the return game taking the kickoff 100 yards to put UH up with 17 seconds remaining in regulation.

UH’s defense held strong on an SMU hail mary to secure the 44-37 victory.

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