HOUSTON — Houston pulled away in the second half of its Senior Day for a 73-51 win over East Carolina on Sunday in the final game at Hofheinz Pavillion.
Rob Gray scored 24 points, going over the 1,000-point plateau for his career as Hosuton improved to 21-9 overall and 12-6 in the American Athletic Conference.
The Cougars have earned the No. 3 seeding for the AAC Tournament in Hartford, CT, and have a bye into the quarterfinals.
ECU (14-17, 6-12) is the No. 9 seed for the league tournament and will meet No. 8 Temple (16-15, 7-11) on Thursday at 3:30 p.m. The winner meets top-seeded Southern Methodist (27-4, 17-1) on Friday at noon. The Pirates and Owls split their regular-season meetings, each winning at home.
Houston led 33-32 at halftime on Sunday. The Cougars began to pull away with a 15-5 run to lead 48-37 as Gray contributed eight points in the flurry.
Freshman Jeremy Sheppard paced ECU with 12 points. Senior Andre Washington blocked three shots to set a new school record with 92 for the season.
Kentrell Barkley and Deng Riak had eight points each for the Pirates. B.J. Tyson and Washington tallied six points apiece.
Caleb White was limited to five points after scoring 28 in a 66-62 Senior Night win over Connecticut on Wednesday.
Michel Nzege and Raquan Wilkins had three points each for ECU.
Riak’s eight rebounds led the Pirates on the boards. Sheppard had three assists and two steals.
Wes Van Beck had 11 points for Houston.
The Cougars will play off campus next season while the facility, which has been known as Hofheinz Pavillion, undergoes a $60 million renovation and becomes the Fertitta Center.