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by: Kris Gardner, United States Basketball Writers Association member. Credentialed media member since 1997. USBWA approved online journalist. Voter of Katrina McClain, Naismith, USBWA, and Wooden awards.

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Coogs edge Prairie View 80-75

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POSTED: December 29, 2012 -- 10:50 p.m. CT

HOUSTON, TX (Hofheinz Pavilion) -- The Houston Cougars avenged an early season loss by defeating the Prairie View A&M Panthers 80-75 in front of an announced crowd of 3,437 fans gathered inside the cozy confines of Hofheinz Pavilion.

The Panthers defeated the Coogs 81-80 on November 28 on Prairie View's campus; and, the Cougars have thought about that loss since that night.

Danuel House, freshman forward, and TaShawn Thomas, sophomore forward each scored 22 points and took turns making keys plays to help the Coogs improve to 10-2 this season.

The Coogs played an outstanding first half on offense and defense. Houston shot 50 percent (15 for 30) from the field including an excellent 61.5% (8 for 13) from three-point range; and, they limited the Panthers to just 34.4% (11 for 32) field goal shooting.

Houston led 46-32 at the half.

Prairie View's Jourdan DeMuynck scored seven straight points to start the second half; but, the Coogs continued their efficiency on offense and led by 17 points three times in the first six and half minutes of the second stanza.

Leading 62-45 at the 13:31 mark, the Coogs' offense bogged down and the Panthers went on a 12-4 run to pull within nine points (66-57) with 10:52 left in the half.

But, the Panthers (5-8) went cold for four minutes and, despite only making two field goals during the same span, the Coogs added four free throws and led 74-58 at the 6:53 mark of the game.

Then, the Coogs' offense bogged down while the Panthers crashed the offensive glass and made key baskets to trim Houston's lead to just four points (76-72) with 89 seconds remaining.

Houston's J.J. Thompson missed a three-point shot attempt; but, TaShawn Thomas pulled down the offensive rebound. Thomas passed the pass to Danuel House ; and, the Panthers were forced to foul House with 21 seconds left. House sank both free throws for a six point lead; and, after the Panthers' Carl Blair missed a three-point shot, House rebounded the miss and went to the foul line once again.

House sank both free throws for an 80-72 lead with 9 seconds on the clock. Blair sank a three-point shot with 2.2 seconds left for the final points of the game.

Byron Rimm, Prairie View's head coach, was proud of his team's effort; but, not satisfied with his team's loss.

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