Quentin Grimes’ scorching night lifts UH over Western Kentucky
A career night from junior guard Quentin Grimes and a stifling all-around defense propelled the Houston men’s basketball team to an 81-57 win over Western Kentucky on Thursday.
The Cougars (19-3, 12-3 American Athletic Conference) forced 20 turnovers on the night and hit a total of 13 3-pointers.
The Cougars jumped out to an early 10-point lead thanks to sophomore guard Tramon Mark’s quick 10 points off the bench. Mark came on early after sophomore starting guard Marcus Sasser picked up two early fouls. Mark and Sasser each ended the game with 12 points each.
Both teams had strong offensive showings in the first half as both shot near the 50 percent mark. The Cougars gave up a season-high 38 first-half points, as the Hilltoppers had 22 points in the paint and were a perfect 10-of-10 from the free-throw line.
Mark, along with Grimes helped the Cougars start 6 of 8 from the 3-point line. Grimes went on a personal 18-point scoring run for the Cougars near the end of the first half to propel them to a slim 39-38 lead at the half.
Senior guard Dejon Jarreau hit the Cougars tenth 3-pointer of the game midway through the second half to stretch the lead to 15. A defensive zone breakdown from the Hilltoppers led to a wide-open dunk from senior center Brison Gresham that gave the Cougars a 66-50 lead with eight minutes remaining.
Gresham and fellow forwards junior Reggie Chaney and senior Justin Gorham held Wooden Award watch list member Charles Bassey to just nine points and seven rebounds. Gorham led the team in both rebounds and assists, with eight and five respectively.
Quentin Grimes hit a career-high eight 3-pointers and ended with 33 points and six rebounds.
Senior forward Fabian White, coming off of an ACL injury, was able to record five points and two blocks in 12 minutes as he still works his way back.
The Cougars ended the game on an impressive 42-19 run. The next game for the Cougars is on Sunday against USF.