The Hawaii basketball team turned to its free-throw shooting to survive a second-half field-goal drought of over 12 minutes and turned back Prairie View A&M 72-60 tonight at the Stan Sheriff Center.
UH (5-2) opened its seven-game December homestand by shooting 31-for-38 (81.6 percent) at the foul line in front of 2,715 fans, compared to the Panthers’ 10-for-23 (43.5 percent).
Point guards Drew Buggs (17 points) and Brocke Stepteau (16) had season-high scoring efforts and forward Mike Thomas had his second double-double of the year with 14 points and 11 rebounds.
After Prairie View closed to within four points late, Stepteau hit a deep 3-pointer to beat the shot clock and end the 12:11 field-goal drought.
The Panthers (2-6) of the SWAC outscored UH off of turnovers 20-7, aided by a season-high 19 giveaways by UH. Guard Gary Blackston led Prairie View with 27 points on 10-for-19 shooting, while Zachary Hamilton added 19 points.
UH led by seven points at halftime, 36-29.
At halftime, UH athletic director David Matlin presented St. Louis Cardinals second baseman Kolten Wong with a retired No. 14 baseball jersey.