Buzzing on Yahoo Sports:

Louisville 91, Houston 52

The SportsXchange

LOUISVILLE, Ky. -- After hitting 70 percent of their shots in the first half and taking a 29-point lead, the No. 18 Louisville Cardinals cruised to a 91-52 victory over the Houston Cougars on Thursday night at the KFC Yum! Center.

Louisville (15-3, 4-1 American Athletic Conference), which ended up shooting 51.5 percent (34-of-66 ), was led by junior forward Wayne Blackshear with a career-high 23 points. Senior guard Russ Smith, a preseason first-team All-American, had 18 despite sitting out most of the second half.

Houston (10-7, 2-2), which shot 30.8 percent (16-of-52) was paced by junior forward TaShawn Thomas with 16 points. Sophomore guard Jherrod Stiggers had 14.

The game got sloppy in the second half as Louisville substituted liberally, with seldom-used reserves guard Anton Gill (six points), forward Akoy Agau (four points) and guard David Levitch all seeing action. All three are freshmen.

Blackshear came off the bench after starting all 18 previous games. Louisville coach Rick Pitino said it was because he was getting into foul trouble. He had fouled out of three of his previous four games.

Louisville did a good job of distributing the ball. The Cardinals had 23 assists on their 34 baskets. Freshman guard Terry Rozier, getting a start because of an injury to junior Chris Jones, had eight assists as opposed to only one turnover. He also had nine points. Louisville had just nine turnovers. Houston had 16. Louisville had nine steals.

Louisville got off to a 12-2 start en route to a 57-28 halftime lead.

The hot-shooting Cardinals, were led by Smith with 14 points.

Blackshear had nine points and Rozier added eight.

Houston, which shot 33 percent from the field in the first half (8 of 24), was paced by Stiggers with nine points and Thomas with eight.

Louisville, which had runs of 8-0 and 11-0 in the half, was able to get wide-open shots on most occasions

NOTES: Louisville G Chris Jones did not play because of a strained oblique suffered against SMU on Sunday. The junior is averaging 11.3 points per game, third on the team. He was replaced in the starting lineup by freshman Terry Rozier (6.7 ppg). ... Houston sophomore G L.J. Rose missed his sixth straight game because of a foot injury. He started every game before being hurt and was averaging 10.1 points and 5.1 assists per game. ...Houston sophomore F Daniel House missed his 10th straight game because of a knee injury. He is averaging 15.6 points-per-game, second on the team. F J.J. Richardson, a senior transfer from Pittsburgh, missed his fifth straight game because of a foot injury. A part-time starter, Richardson is averaging 4.4 ppg. ... Louisville's next game is Saturday at Connecticut. Houston's next game is Sunday when the Cougars host Rutgers.
Sign up for Yahoo Fantasy Football
View Comments (0)