A win is a win, right? The Cincinnati Bearcats (4-1) looked like their heads weren't fully in the game in the first half and they fell behind up until a late run pushed them past the Samford Bulldogs.
As we have come accustomed this season, Kyle Washington stood out the most in tonight’s contest. Washington led the ‘Cats with 18 points and was able to rack up 12 rebounds and three of the team’s 10 blocks. He is certainly a player to keep an eye on down the road as he has been able to score and control the paint at will. Other notable Bearcats were Gary Clark who finished with 13 points and seven rebounds, and Jacob Evans who dropped 12 points and notched seven rebounds, but looked human for once, hitting just 4-of-11 shots from the floor. Freshman big man Nysier Brooks played well and gave the Bearcats a boost they really needed, scoring 10 points on 4-of-5 shooting while collecting four rebounds and blocking three shots in 15 minutes of play.
It was an ugly game for Cincinnati, which seemed to be expecting an easy one. After a loss to Rhode Island on Saturday, you would think that the Bearcats would be looking to prove themselves in a big way facing off against a team like Samford, but they didn’t seem focused.
The Bulldogs came out of the gate on a mission and had UC on its heels for most of the first half, taking a 35-30 lead at halftime. Junior guard Demetrius Denzel- Dyson led the charge for Samford with 14 points. Dyson used his size (6'5" and 205 pounds) to push around UC's backcourt. He was followed up big man Wyatt Walker, who added 11 points and 11 rebounds which is great news for Samford fans because he is only a sophomore.
However, in the final 20 minutes, UC’s superior talent came through, as the Bearcats limited the Bulldogs to six field goals in the second half while shooting 48.3 percent from the floor themselves.
UC's next game will come against Lipscomb this upcoming Saturday and hopefully we will see a Bearcat team that looks focused for all 40 minutes.