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January 11, 2012UAB took a ten point first half lead over Marshall but couldn't hold it. The Thundering Herd went on a 10-0 run late in the second half and held on for a 61-59 win over the Blazers Wednesday night at Bartow Arena.
"We just refuse to block out," said Blazer coach Mike Davis. "Our guards just won't do it. Against a team like this you're going to lose if you don't. I will take the blame for a lot of things but I can't block out for them."
UAB led by eight with 11 minutes to go but the Herd kept pulling closer. With just over eight minutes to go the Blazers led 53-46. Four minutes later they trailed 5-53. They did retake the lead 59-58 on a Cameron Moore lay-up with 1:53 to go - but that was the last time they Blazers would put it in the basket.
Marshal retook the lead on a lay-up by Robert Goff and a foul shot for a three point play. UAB set up for a three point play to win. Jordan Swing took the shot with 23 seconds remaining - but he had a defender on him. "If you're not open you don't take the shot. It's not like there was only one second left on the clock," Davis said.
Dennis Tinnon got the rebound for Marshall and was fouled. He missed the front end of a one and one and the ball was rebounded by Ovie Soko giving the Blazers the chance for the win or at least a tie. The ball came into the right corner to set up a lay-up for Moore. Somehow a Blazer cut in front of Moore and tripped forcing Moore to step out for the ball. Rather than a lay-up he missed a forced jumper at the buzzer. "We had Cam open for a lay-up and one of our guys falls in front of him," says Davis.
"It's just not finishing games. It's frustrating to me that we don't block out. We just don't have the toughness to do it ..It's a matter of who's tougher."
Soko had another double-double with 11 rebounds and 18 points. Cameron Moore scored 22 and Jordan Swing added 11 points. DeAndre Kane had his own double-double for Marshall with 21 points and ten rebounds. Tinnons pulled down 19 boards for the Herd aand scored eight points.
"We've got a game Saturday against a good Southern Miss team, we've got to put this behind us," said Soko.
Marshall is now 12-4 overall and 3-0 in conference play. The Blazers drop to 5-10 and 0-2 in C-USA. UAB travels to Southern Miss on Saturday to face Southern Miss. Tip-off is at 1:00pm the game will be televised on FSN.