HOUSTON (AP) — TaShawn Thomas scored 23 points, including two free throws with 9 seconds left, and blocked a late layup by Shabazz Napier as Houston rallied for a 75-71 victory over No. 17 Connecticut on Tuesday night in the American Athletic Conference opener for both teams.
Thomas was 8 of 15 from the field and 7 of 8 from the free throw line and grabbed eight rebounds for Houston (9-5, 1-0), which defeated a ranked team for the first time since beating Central Florida on Jan. 8, 2011.
Jherrod Stiggers added 17 points and Danrad Knowles had 13 points and nine rebounds for the Cougars, who shot 49 percent from the field.
Napier scored 25 of his 27 points in the second half as he led the Huskies (11-2, 0-1) back from a 21-point first-half deficit to hold a lead with just over a minute remaining.
Ryan Boatright finished with 19 points and nine assists, and DeAndre Daniels added 12 points for Connecticut.