Jarace Walker scored 21 points to lift No. 2 Houston to a 72-59 victory over host Cincinnati on Sunday.
Walker made 8 of 14 shots from the floor and all four attempts from the free-throw line to fall just shy of his season high of 23 points, set on two occasions.
Marcus Sasser recorded 16 points, six rebounds and five steals and J’Wan Roberts added 14 points and 11 boards for the Cougars (16-1, 4-0 American Athletic Conference).
Tramon Mark had 10 points for Houston, which benefited from a 15-2 run to start the second half en route to securing its seventh straight win.
Cincinnati’s Mika Adams-Woods finished with a team-high 19 points after making 8 of 11 shots from the floor — including 3 of 4 from 3-point range. Viktor Lahkin scored 14 of his 16 of his points in the second half and Landers Nolley II added 12 for the Bearcats (11-6, 2-2), who committed 17 turnovers en route to losing for the second time in three games.
Houston was nursing a seven-point lead at halftime before opening the second half with a flourish. Walker had a dunk and four free throws and Jamal Shead drained a 3-pointer to highlight the 15-2 surge.
Adams-Woods sank a 3-pointer and Lahkin made a layup as the Bearcats chipped away and trimmed the Cougars’ lead to 58-48 with 5:41 remaining in the second half. Mark halted the momentum with a 3-pointer and Sasser added a steal and a dunk to quiet the crowd.
Sasser didn’t stop there, draining a 3-pointer and adding another steal and layup with 2:22 remaining to essentially seal the win.
Walker made 5 of 9 shots for 11 points, helping Houston to a 35-28 lead at halftime. Nolley made all four of his 3-point shots and Adams-Woods also had 12 points to keep Cincinnati within earshot.
–Field Level Media