HATTIESBURG, Miss. - UAB used a stifling defense in the second half to shut down Southern Miss and hold them to their lowest scoring output of the season, as the Golden Eagles fell, 66-49, Saturday night at Reed Green Coliseum.
It was the Blazers (16-8, 6-3 C-USA) first win in Hattiesburg since Feb. 18, 2006. Southern Miss (13-9, 3-5) has now lost three straight and four of its last six games.
"(UAB) is about as good a starting five as there is," said Southern Miss head coach Larry Eustachy. "We were out-classed. We have some guys that are struggling right now, and you can't have that against a team like that and win."
R.L. Horton led the Golden Eagles with 19 points, but just four in the second half. Courtney Beasley had 16 points and a team-high six rebounds, and Jeremy Wise added 10 points and four boards.
Southern Miss missed five of its first six shots in the second half. UAB scored eight of the first 10 points four minutes into the half, with six of them coming at the free throw line. The Golden Eagles twice cut the lead to six, but that's as close as they would get.
A Robert Vaden three-pointer started a UAB 7-2 run, culminating in a 48-37 advantage with 11.37 to play. Southern Miss cut the lead to nine (52-43), but the Blazers went on a 14-4 run to take its biggest lead of the game, 66-47 with 1:49 to play.
The Golden Eagles were held to just 30.0-percent (9-of-30) from the field in the second half, which led to a season-low 20 second half points.
Southern Miss began the game hot, hitting seven of its first eight shots on its way to a 14-4 lead just 5:39 into the game. However, the Golden Eagles only hit one of its next five shots, and UAB went on a 12-2 run to tie the game at 16.
The Golden Eagles retook a 22-18 lead with 7:26 to play in the half. But, the Blazers went on a 9-0 run to take their first lead of the game at 27-22 with 3:36 left, a lead they would not relinquish.
But, a Beasley jumper followed by Jeremy Wise two free throws and a R.L. Horton three-pointer tied the game at 29. But a Lawrence Kinnard jumper gave UAB a 31-29 halftime advantage.
The Blazers held a big advantage at the line, hitting 15-of-21 free throws, while Southern Miss was just 4-of-5. The Golden Eagles were also held to a season-low four assists.
UAB was led by Paul Delaney III with 16 points and six rebounds. Robert Vaden and Channing Toney each scored 15 points, and Lawrence Kinnard added 12 points and 12 rebounds for his league-leading 12th double-double.
Southern Miss heads back on the road this Wednesday, Feb. 11, when they travel to Houston, Texas to face Rice. Tip-off is set for 7 p.m. CT.
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