Knights Fall to No. 14 Cougars in Houston

Box Score (PDF)

HOUSTON – The UCF men's basketball team kept it a one-point game with No. 14 Houston through 28 minutes but ultimately couldn't finish strong Thursday night in Houston as the Knights (15-9, 7-7 AAC) fell 70-52 to the Cougars (21-4, 10-2 AAC) at Frittata Center.

It was a tough shooting night for the Knights as the Cougars held them to just 28.3 percent (17-for-60) from the field. UCF was led by Dre Fuller Jr. and Darius Johnson with 12 points each.

The Knights also missed some opportunities at the free throw line, sinking just 10 on 19 attempts.

The Cougars went on a 13-0 run early in the game to jump out to a commanding 17-5 lead, but to UCF's credit, they didn't yield easily, answering back with a 10-point run of their own to make it a one-point game with just under four minutes left in the first half.

As both sides battled back-and-forth into the second half of play, a clutch Darius Perry three-pointer made it 45-44 in favor of Houston with just 12:01 to play. That's when things began to slip away from the Knights as the Cougars would go on to outscore UCF 25-8 to close out the game and secure the 70-52 victory.

Four different Cougars scored in the double digits, led by Taza Moore, who tallied 14 points to go along with seven rebounds and three assists. Fabian White also added 12 points to help the Cougars bounce back from a two-game losing streak. As a team, Houston shot 44 percent (26-of-59) from the field.

"I'm really proud of our guys' hustle tonight, we just didn't make shots," said head coach Johnny Dawkins.

"We have to be prepared for the next game no matter what happens. Our guys have to set our sights on our next opponent [ECU] and get ready to compete."

The Knights return to Addition Financial Arena this weekend as UCF welcomes ECU (13-12, 4-9 AAC) to town for a Sunday afternoon matchup set to tip at 2:00 p.m. The Knights defeated the Pirates earlier this year at their place, 92-85 in overtime.