Marshall routed by Houston, 103-76
HOUSTON -- Houston hammered the defenseless Marshall Thundering Herd, 103-76, in a Saturday afternoon men's basketball game at Hofheinz Pavilion.
The Cougars got everything they wanted in a 59.4 percent shooting performance, Marshall head coach Tom Herrion said.
"A thoroughly disappointing performance on the defensive end of the floor by us," Herrion said.
Houston entered the day leading Conference USA in scoring with 76.8 points a game and easily surpassed that in its second 100-point burst of the season.
The Cougars were hot in the first half and built a 44-28 lead on 51.5 percent shooting.
Then they got even hotter in the second period, hitting 67.7 percent of their field goal attempts and scoring 59 points.
"We just got manhandled," Herrion said. "They got every basket they wanted. We had no resistance."
Forward TaShawn Thomas had 25 points, 14 rebounds, five assists and three blocked shots for the Cougars (16-11, 5-9 C-USA) who moved into a tie for ninth place with the Thundering Herd in the conference standings.
C-USA scoring leader Joseph Young, a sophomore guard, and forward Danuel House both netted 23 points.
The Cougars also had a surprise contribution by forward Mikhail McLean with a season-high 12 points and seven rebounds.
McLean, a 23.5 percent free throw shooter at just 4-for-17 for the season, tossed in six of nine.
Houston shared the basketball extremely well with 26 assists on 38 field goals, committed just 11 turnovers and was plus-six in rebounds.
"The big difference today was great ball movement," McLean said. "We did a great job of getting a lot of assists on a few turnovers, so that was the key."
Marshall had good production from Dre Kane and Elijah Pittman with 27 and 22 points respectively and Dennis Tinnon scored 13 to go along with grabbing 12 rebounds.
Seven other Marshall players combined for 14 points.
The Herd shot 36.4 percent from the field and has its best game of the season at the foul line, making 21 of 27 free throws for 77.8 percent.
Houston rolled to a 69-39 lead on a House 3-point shot with 13:08 left in the game before Marshall tried to climb back in it.
Chris Martin's 3-pointer for Marshall capped a 14-2 run that reduced the deficit to 71-53 with 9:08 still left in the game. Kane also hit a 3-pointer in the run and Pittman made two.
Martin made his first appearance since a Feb. 6 game at Tulane and scored for the first time since a Jan. 9 game against Tulsa.
That was as close as Marshall got, although it was still an 18-point difference with 8:32 remaining.
The Cougars took their biggest lead, 102-70, with 41 seconds to go Herd freshman Tamron Manning and Kane combined for six points in the final 22 seconds.
"I wasn't very happy about that eight-minute mark when they cut the lead to 18," said Houston head coach James Dickey. "What I was concerned about were the two things that got us there -- lack of defending and shooting the ball quickly on the other end. Those were the two things that I was frustrated about.
"We got some other guys back in the game and we got back on track like we had been earlier."
The 103 points tied the most given up this season by Marshall, which yielded the same amount in a November double-overtime defeat at Hofstra.
Southern Miss, the other team that scored 100 on Marshall in a 102-46 drubbing on Jan. 23, visits Cam Henderson Center for a 7 p.m., Tuesday, rematch. It will be Senior Night for Tinnon, Nigel Spikes and Rob Goff.
The second-place Golden Eagles (21-7, 10-3) played a Saturday home game against East Carolina.
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