Sports Women's Basketball

Houston falls short in overtime at UCF

Houston was unable to finish off UCF on the road Saturday afternoon. | Oscar Herrera/The Cougar

The Houston women’s basketball team lost its fourth straight game Saturday afternoon in a tough overtime loss to UCF on the road.

The Cougars started the game with six team fouls just three minutes into the game. UCF missed 10 shots in a row but did take advantage of the Cougars’ foul trouble and lived at the line. Despite their starts in foul trouble, Houston ended the first up 25-17.

At the beginning of the second, it was up to the UH bench to make shots. Freshman guard Kierra Merchant was big in the second with nine points but the Knights started to heat up and brought it to 44-43 before halftime.

After halftime, Houston used their full-court defense to their advantage, forcing five jump balls in the quarter. However, possession per possession the Cougars and the Knights were trading shots with a total of 10 lead changes. Free throws were a big part of the game, with Houston shooting just 6-9 and UCF shooting 20-25. By the end of the quarter, UCF was up 60-59.

At the start of the fourth UCF went up to a six-point lead but UH quickly regained the lead with two minutes to go. Three of the starting lineup for the Cougars fouled out at the end of the quarter. With four seconds to go, UCF ties the game 78-78 and it goes over time.

With three UH players fouled out, UCF came out big and pulled away in overtime.

Graduate guard N’Yah Boyd led the team with 19 points and four rebounds and Merchant off the bench with 14 points and three rebounds.

The Houston Cougars dropped to 11-8 on the year and 2-7 in conference play and will return home against Cincinnati at the Fertitta Center on Jan. 30.

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