March 8, 2007
Quotes from Coach of the Year Kirk Speraw
The 2007 Conference USA Men's Basketball Championship presented by Aeropostale concluded Saturday at the FedExForum in Memphis, Tenn. No. 1 Memphis downed No. 3 Houston, 71-59, and will now carry the C-USA banner into the NCAA tournament with the league's automatic bid. With the win the Tigers have now won 22 consecutive games, the longest streak in the country.
Memphis records back-to-back 30-win seasons for the first time in school history and becomes the first team in the 12-year history of the league to go undefeated in the regular season and also win the C-USA Championship title. U of M has won 32 straight games at home, also the longest such streak in the country. The back-to-back championship titles are the first for the school since 1983-84 and 1984-85 when it took consecutive Metro Conference Tournament titles.
Semifinal action tipped off Friday afternoon with host and No. 1 Memphis downing No. 4 Tulane, 71-49. The second game featured a matchup of cross town rivals as third-seeded Houston defeated No. 7 Rice, 77-62.
Thursday's action featued four quarterfinal games. In the first contest, No. 7 Rice upset No. 2 UCF, 53-51, on a Morris Almond 3-pointer with 2.8 seconds left. Game two saw No. 3 Houston take out No. 6 Southern Miss, 62-59. The second session began with host and No. 1 Memphis downing No. 8 Marshall, 92-71. In the final game of the day, No. 4 Tulane edged No. 5 Tulsa, 58-56.
Four first round games highlighted action on Thursday. No. 7 Rice defeated No. 10 UTEP, 77-74, to get things started on Wednesday. No. 6 Southern Miss downed No. 11 SMU 59-52 in game two. The evening session featured No. 8 Marshall outlasting No. 9 UAB 64-63 and No. 5 Tulsa defeating No. 12 East Carolina 65-50.
2007 C-USA Championship Presented by Aéropostale
FedExForum, Memphis, Tenn.
|Wednesday, March 7|
|(7) Rice def. (10) UTEP
|(6) Southern Miss def. (11) SMU
|(8) Marshall def. (9) UAB
|(5) Tulsa def. (12) East Carolina
|Thursday, March 8|
|(7) Rice def. (2) UCF (CSTV)
|(3) Houston def. (6) Southern Miss (CSTV)
|(1) Memphis def. (8) Marshall (CSTV)
|(4) Tulane def. (5) Tulsa (CSTV)
|Friday, March 9|
*(1) Memphis def. (4) Tulane (CSTV)
|*(3) Houston def. No. (7) Rice (CSTV)
|Saturday, March 10|
|(1) Memphis def. (3) Houston (CBS)
Game One - Rice 77, UTEP 74
Conference USA Player of the Year Morris Almond scored 31 points and grabbed eight rebounds as Rice defeated UTEP 77-74 Wednesday in the opening game of the 2007 C-USA Men's Basketball Tournament presented by Aeropostale. Almond connected on 12-of-21 from the field, and keyed a second-half rally for the Owls. The 6-foot-6 senior guard scored 10 points in the final nine minutes to help the seventh-seeded Owls (15-15) erase a UTEP lead that grew to as much as 11 points in the second half.
Game Two - Southern Miss 59, SMU 52
Jarvis Hill scored 16 points and grabbed nine rebounds, and Jeremy Wise added 15 points to lead Southern Mississippi to a 59-52 victory over SMU in the opening round of the Conference USA Tournament on Wednesday afternoon. Courtney Beasley added 11 points for the sixth-seeded Golden Eagles, who will face Houston, the tournament's No. 3 seed, on Thursday.
Game Three - Marshall 53, UAB 52
Mark Dorris scored 15 points, and Marshall survived a difficult second half to defeat UAB 53-52 in the opening round of the 2007 Conference USA Men's Basketball Tournament presented by Aeropostale on Wednesday night. Marshall, which led by 14 at the half, committed 13 turnovers in the second half and connected on only 5 of its 20 shots, including missing all nine 3-point attempts.
Game Four - Tulsa 65, ECU 50
Calvin Walls scored a career-high 15 points, and Rod Earls added 13 to lead Tulsa to a 65-50 victory over East Carolina on Wednesday in the final game of the Conference USA tournament's opening round.
Game Five - Rice 53, UCF 51Game Six - Houston 62, Southern Miss 59
Morris Almond scored 30 points, including a 3-pointer with 2.8 seconds left, to lead seventh-seeded Rice to a 53-51 upset of second-seeded UCF in the quarterfinals of the Conference USA Tournament on Thursday.
Robert McKiver scored 28 points on Thursday and Houston weathered a second-half rally by Southern Mississippi as the Cougars defeated the Golden Eagles 62-59 in the quarterfinals of the Conference USA Tournament. McKiver connected on 10-of-19 shots from the field, including hitting five of his nine 3-pointers for the Cougars (17-14).Box Score
Game Seven - Memphis 92, Marshall 71
Doneal Mack and Jeremy Hunt scored 19 points apiece to lead No. 5 Memphis to a 92-71 victory over Marshall in the quarterfinals of the Conference USA Tournament on Thursday night. Five Tigers scored in double figures. Joey Dorsey had 14 points and 11 rebounds for Memphis (28-3), which recorded its 20th straight victory, the longest streak winning streak in the nation.
Game Eight - Tulane 58, Tulsa 56
Kevin Sims scored 15 points, including a pair of free throws with 12.8 seconds left, as fourth-seeded Tulane defeated Tulsa 58-56 in the quarterfinals of the Conference USA tournament on Thursday.
Game Nine - Memphis 71, Tulane 49
Chris Douglas-Roberts scored 17 points, and fifth-ranked Memphis extended the nation's longest winning streak to 21 straight Friday by beating Tulane 71-49 in the Conference USA tournament semifinals.
Game Ten - Houston 77, Rice 62
Robert McKiver scored 25 points and grabbed six rebounds Friday night as Houston defeated crosstown rival Rice 77-62 in the semifinals of the Conference USA tournament.The Cougars (18-14) built the lead to as much as 22 in the second half behind 3-point shooting. Houston connected on 6-of-12 from long-range after the break and will play fifth-ranked Memphis, a 71-49 winner over Tulane, in the title game Saturday.
Championship Game - Memphis 71, Houston 59
The fifth-ranked Memphis Tigers rolled into the NCAA tournament in style. Chris Douglas-Roberts and Antonio Anderson each scored 17 points and the Tigers extended the nation's longest winning streak to 22 straight, beating Houston 71-59 on Saturday to wrap up their second straight Conference USA tournament championship. The Tigers (30-3) already had their NCAA tournament spot assured without the automatic berth. But they may have earned a No. 2 seed for their second straight and 20th NCAA appearance overall after clinching their second straight 30-win season, improving to 63-7 over the past two seasons.
2007 All-Tournament Team
Morris Almond - Rice
Oliver Lafayette - Houston
Robert McKiver - Houston
Antonio Anderson - Memphis
Joey Dorsey - Memphis
MVP: Chris Douglas-Roberts - Memphis