I-45 Rivalry Opens Conference Play
Story Links HOUSTON – The University of Houston women’s basketball team will open its American Athletic Conference opener against SMU on Friday at the Fertitta Center at 7 p.m.
THE GAME This is Houston’s third of three straight home games. Graduate Tatyana Hill is 3 points away from the 1000-point Club (997 points). She will be the 28th Cougar to reach 1,000 career points. This is the opening conference for both teams this season. Junior Laila Blair has scored more than 20 points in each of the last two games.
RECENTLY Laila Blair (21 points) has scored 20-plus in back-to-back games. Blair is the second Cougar this season to accomplish the feat (Tiara Young, 3 games). Houston led by as many as eight points over Washington State. The Cougars pulled within three points in the fourth quarter. Britney Onyeje tied his career high with five three pointers. Houston finished its nonconference schedule 3-10.
TIP Houston ranks fourth nationally in steals per game (14.2) and fourth in turnovers forced per game (25.2). The Cougars ranked 18th nationally in offensive rebounds per game (15.9). The Cougars have played the most overtime games in the country (4). Lipscomb alone has gone into overtime three different games. Blair is within 100 points of joining the 1000 Point Club (906). Junior Laila Blair was a unanimous First Team Preseason All-Conference selection by the American coaches. Blair has scored 10 more in 11 straight games. The Cougars were picked to finish second in the league and received two first-place votes in the Coaches Poll. Blair was one of three 2021-22 All-American players to hit six 3-pointers in a game and the only player in the conference with two 6-plus 3-point games. Blair finished eighth in the league in scoring in 2021-22 (13.3 ppg). Graduate Tatyana Hill finished seventh in the league in rebounding in 2021-22 (7.3 rpg).
HISTORY OF THE SERIES
Houston’s record against SMU 39-26
home / away / neutral 18-12 / 19-12 / 2-2
Last meeting W, 63-36, 2/26/22, home
Houston streak, 2
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– UHCougars.com –