Saturday in Conference USA men's basketball featured a pair of overtime thrillers and an extended win streak. Houston and Tulsa nearly played a two games as the pair battled through three overtime periods before the home team Golden Hurricane earned the 101-92 win. Southern Miss defeated East Carolina in overtime, 86-82. No. 22/25 Memphis won its 16th game in a row by defeating Marshall, 71-59. Tulane senior Jordan Callahan broke the school record for career 3-pointers and scored 20 in a 78-67 win against SMU. UTEP defeated visiting UCF, 73-58, and the two teams are now tied for third place in the C-USA standings. UAB juniors Preston Purifoy and Jordan Swing scored 19 points apiece to lead the Blazers to an 80-57 win against Rice.
(22/25) Memphis 71, Marshall 59: Memphis extended its win streak to 16 in a row, and remained the only NCAA Division I team undefeated in true road games, with a 71-59 victory at Marshall Saturday. Sophomore Adonis Thomas (Memphis, Tenn.) finished with 23 points and tied a career-high 10 rebounds for his first career double-double. Junior G Joe Jackson (Memphis, Tenn.) added 12 points for the Tigers while junior G Geron Johnson totaled 11 points and five assists. Marshall was led by 16 points apiece from juniors DeAndre Kane (Pittsburgh, Pa.) and Elijah Pittman (Covington, Ky.). With Kane's fourth point of the game, he passed Naismith Memorial Hall of Famer and Herd great Hal Greer for 19th on Marshall's career scoring list. Senior F Dennis Tinnon (Green Bay, Wis.) registered his seventh double-double of the season, 19th of his career, with 15 points and 13 rebounds.
Southern Miss 86, East Carolina 82 (OT): Southern Miss erased an 11-point deficit with five minutes to play, capping off a furious comeback to earn an 86-82 overtime victory over East Carolina. At 20-6, it is the fourth straight year that Southern Miss has won 20 game. The victory also gave head coach Donnie Tyndall the most wins in school history by a first-year coach. Senior Dwayne Davis led Southern Miss with 23 points. It was his third straight 20-point game. Junior G Neil Watson (Kansas City, Kan.) scored 17 points and tied a career-high with eight rebounds and senior F Jonathan Mills (Chicago, Ill.) had 14 points and eight boards. Southern Miss trailed 66-55 with 5:41 to play after two Miguel Paul (Winter Haven, Fla.) free throws. Junior G Akeem Richmond (Sanford, N.C.) led all scorers with 25 points, including 8 three-pointers to tie the school record. Paul had 22 points and eight assists, and junior F Robert Sampson (Atlanta, Ga.) had 16 points and 13 rebounds. It was Sampson's sixth double-double of the season and eighth of his career.
UTEP 73, UCF 58 UTEP scored the first eight points of the second half to break open a close game in a 73-58 victory against UCF. The Miners shot 64 percent over the last 20 minutes fell behind 11-2 in the first six and a half minutes, then rallied to take a 31-28 lead at the half. The teams are now tied for third place in the C-USA standings with five league games remaining. The Miners held the Knights to 32.3 percent shooting, and kept them out of the lane (22 second-chance points after allowing 70 in the previous two games combined) while forcing them into taking 28 three-point shots. The Miners also neutralized UCF junior Isaiah Sykes (Detroit, Mich.), the team leader in scoring, rebounding, assists and steals for C-USA games. He finished with 10 points and six boards, both below his season averages. Junior C John Bohannon (Lancaster, Texas) led UTEP with 16 points. Konner Tucker (Fort Worth, Texas) had 15 and sophomore Julian Washburn (Duncanville, Texas) added 10. Junior F Tristan Spurlock (Woodbridge, Va.) paced the Knights with 15 points and junior G Calvin Newell (Philadelphia, Pa.) added 11 points.
Tulsa 101, Houston 92 (3OT): Led by reigning C-USA Freshman of the Week D'Andre Wright's (Lawton, Okla.) 21 points, Tulsa outlasted Houston 101-92 in a triple-overtime thriller. Wright was one of five Hurricane players in double-figures as he reached his 21 points on 8-of-11 shooting. Wright scored 19 of his 21 points in the final 35 minutes of the game. Freshman G James Woodard (Edmond, Okla.) recorded his fourth career double-double with 16 points and a team-high 12 rebounds. Junior Pat Swilling Jr. (New Orleans, La.) and freshman G Rashad Ray (New Orleans, La.) each chipped in 14 points, while senior G Scottie Haralson (Jackson, Miss.) added 10 points. The triple-overtime game was TU's first game since the 2012 C-USA quarterfinals against Marshall. It was Houston's first since the 2003-04 season. Houston was led by sophomore TaShawn Thomas (Killeen, Texas), who tallied a career-high 31 points, and classmate Joseph Young (Houston, Texas) tossed in 25 points. Freshman G Jherrod Stiggers (Terrell, Texas) added 15 points, with five 3-pointers including a clutch shot at the end of regulation to send the game into its first OT.
Tulane 78, SMU 67: Senior G Jordan Callahan (Marietta, Ga.) became Tulane's all-time leader in 3-pointers and guided the Green Wave to a come-from-behind 78-67 victory over visiting SMU. Callahan poured in 20 points and hit six 3-pointers to surpass the school record held by Jerald Honeycutt since 1997. Sophomore Ricky Tarrant (Pleasant Grove, Ala.) finished with a game-high 25 points, while junior Josh Davis (Raleigh, N.C.) added 15 points and a team-high seven rebounds. Tulane knocked down 14 3-pointers in the game, the second most in school history and tying the most in a conference game by a Green Wave team. All five SMU starters scored in double figures, led by junior F Shawn Williams' (Duncanville, Texas) 16 and classmate Nick Russell (Duncanville, Texas) added 13.
UAB 80, Rice 57: Juniors Preston Purifoy (Conway, Ark.) and Jordan Swing (Birmingham, Ala.) each scored 19 points to lead the UAB to an 80-57 victory against Rice. The Blazers shot 50 percent for the game, making 30 of 60 shots, including draining 11 3-pointers. Purifoy was nearly perfect from the floor, making 7-of-8 shots, and his 19 points were one shy of his career high. Swing posted his second double-double of the season, grabbing 10 boards to go along scoring 19. Rice senior G Tamir Jackson (Paterson, N.J.) led the Owls with a game-high 21 points, making 9-of-16 attempts. The Blazers committed a season-low eight turnovers in the victory, while Rice only made seven miscues of its own.
UPCOMING GAMES Wednesday, February 20
Marshall at UCF (C-USADN) - 6:00p
UTEP at Southern Miss (C-USADN) - 7:00p
East Carolina at Tulsa (C-USADN) - 7:05p
Houston at (22/25) Memphis (CSS) - 8:00p