The Houston Cougars opened their Hawaiian Airlines Diamond Head Classic with an 81-56 victory over the Portland Pilots Sunday afternoon inside the Stan Sheriff Center in Hawaiian. With the win, the Cougars improve to 8-3 on the season and have won six of their last seven games.
After scoring four points on 2-for-15 (13%) shooting from the floor the past two games, sophomore guard Quentin Grimes bounced back in a big way by scoring a game-high 18 points (7-11 FG, 4-7 3PT), all coming in the second half.
It was a wire-to-wire victory for the Cougars after opening the game on a 6-0 run following a made lay-up attempt from junior forward Fabian White — who ended the game with 10 points in the win.
Congrats to @UHCougarMBK for opening the 2019 Hawaiian Airlines Diamond Head Classic with a dub! #LeiUp #CBB… https://t.co/T8nORSh49d— #LeiUp (@#LeiUp) 1577054979.0
Houston had a solid offensive performance after connecting on 50% of their shots, but the Cougars' defense played the most prominent part in their win. UH held the Pilots to shoot 34.7% from the field, and a poor 29.2% from deep. Senior big man Chris Harris Jr. ended the game with a game-high three blocked shots, to go along with 13 points and five rebounds, including four on the offensive end.
In the loss, Malcolm Porter was the only player to score in double digits for the Pilots, as he led Portland in scoring with 11 points and five rebounds.
Following the win, the Cougars will continue their tour of the Hawaiian Airlines Diamond Head Classic to face off against the Georgia Tech Yellow Jacket Monday night, in the Semifinals. Tip-off is slated for 6 P.M. CT.
With a new season on the horizon, the Astros have high hopes for 2024 after coming just one game shy of being in the World Series for three consecutive seasons.
If Houston wants to get back to the Fall Classic in 2024, they're going to have to rely on their pitching. Owner Jim Crane believes the club has 8 starting pitchers when Luis Garcia and Lance McCullers Jr. return mid-season.
Which allows several of the starters to move to the bullpen and provide even more depth. Add those guys to Bryan Abreu, Ryan Pressly, and Josh Hader and you have a recipe for success.
Check out the video above as ESPN Houston's Jeremy Branham goes through the entire staff and makes his case for the Astros having the best pitching staff in baseball.
You can listen to The Killer B's with Jeremy Branham and Joel Blank every weekday on ESPN 97.5 & 92.5 from 3 pm - 6 pm!