Recap: Louisiana vs. Houston
Lafayette, LA (SportsNetwork.com) - Elfrid Payton scored a game-high 31 points, converting a pair of late free throws in overtime, as he helped lead the Louisiana Ragin' Cajuns to a 79-76 win over the Houston Cougars in a non- conference clash at the Cajundome.
Payton shot 10-of-19 from the floor on the night for the Ragin' Cajuns (7-3), but just 11-of-19 at the charity stripe, yet he still came up big when it counted for the hosts as they posted their fifth win in six games. Also having a strong game for Louisiana was Shawn Long who registered a double-double with 22 points and 12 rebounds, six of those coming at the offensive end of the floor.
The Cougars (7-5) were led by TaShawn Thomas with 27 points to go along with six rebounds and seven blocked shots. Danrad Knowles accounted for 16 points off the bench and Brandon Morris chipped in 13 points in the losing cause.
Houston shot a sizzling 72.7 percent from the field in the first half, including a perfect 3-of-3 behind the 3-point line, yet the team managed to put together just a 40-32 advantage at the break.
Leading by as many as 10 points early in the second half, the Cougars saw their edge dwindle and eventually turn into a seven-point lead for Louisiana at the 5:45 mark. The teams experienced their 12th tie of the night in the final seconds of regulation when Payton made the first of two free throws, sending the game into overtime knotted at 69-69.
In the extra session the Ragin' Cajuns opened on a seven-point run, yet had to hang on for the close call.
The Cougars shot an impressive 52.9 percent from the field in the meeting, but that wasn't enough to offset 20 turnovers.Game Notes