Season end a home loss for women’s basketball

The Cougars finished the regular season Saturday with a close 78-74 home loss against the Marshall Thundering Herd. The Cougars finished the season with a 15-15 record (9-7 Conference USA), but Houston locked up the fourth place seed going into the C-USA tournament by beating East Carolina on Thursday.

On Saturday senior guards Tye Jackson, Twiggy McIntyre and Alona Obaze as well as forward Ryan Meyers were recognized for their college career achievements, and the players lived up to the acknowledgment. Unfortunately, Whitney James could not attend the game because of a family emergency.

McIntyre finished with a team-high 20 points, and Jackson scored 14 to go along with her team-high eight assists. Meyers finished with 12 points and two rebounds, and Obaze logged 3 points two rebounds and two assists.

The Cougars were leading 34-29 at halftime, partly attributed to their ability to control the boards and protect the basketball. Houston out-rebounded Marshall 26-23 and caused eight turnovers while only giving up six.

Meyers led the way on the boards, grabbing six rebounds while also making her presence felt on the defensive end with two steals in the first half.

Unfortunately, freshman forward sensation Courtney Taylor suffered a knee injury early in Saturday’s game. She played just one minute against Marshall, and her condition is unsure for the C-USA tournament.

The Cougars grabbed their biggest lead of the game at 36-29 on the first basket of the second half, but afterward Marshall mounted a comeback and made an 11-1 run that gave them the 40-37 lead with 17:49 left.

The two teams traded blows down the stretch, changing leads five times in the next five minutes, and the Cougars were up 56-50 with 11:40 left. After a 7-0 run by the Herd in the next 1:02, Houston tied the game back up at 60 with 8:27 to play, but Marshall grabbed the lead from there and would never give it back.

Marshall made 18-of-23 shots in the second half, shooting an impressive 78.3 percent to earn the victory. Junior guard Casey Baker led the Thundering Herd with 28 points, five rebounds, six assists and five steals. Senior guard Kizzy Hart followed closely with 27 points on 6-of-8 shooting.

The Cougars had eight turnovers in the second half, while only causing seven, and were out-rebounded 14-10 in by the Thundering Herd.

The Cougars finished the season in fourth place in C-USA, which guarantees a bye in the first round of the C-USA tournament, and they will face the winner of the game between Southern Miss and Central Florida.

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