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Hunt, Cooper help Memphis make second-half push

Dec 29, 2006 - 9:05 AM MEMPHIS, Tennessee (Ticker) -- The sizzling second-half performances of Jeremy Hunt and Kareem Cooper continued Memphis' outstanding run at home.

Hunt scored all 12 of his points in the second half and Cooper had 10 of his 12 after intermission as No. 23 Memphis eventually pulled away for an 87-62 victory over Lamar.

Improving to 8-0 at home this season, the Tigers (10-3) also captured their 21st consecutive victory at the FedEx Forum despite some sluggish shooting.

"Good win," Memphis coach John Calipari said. "Anytime you're disgusted with a 25-point win, you know your expectations are pretty high."

Shooting just 43 percent (16-of-37) in the first half, Memphis held a 38-28 lead at the break. Hunt proved to be a part of the problem, missing both of his 3-pointers in the opening 20 minutes.

"To watch it, early on, was painful, and then we came out and we did some things in the second half," Calipari said. "Defensively, I saw some good stuff. But we've got a ways to go."

A senior guard, Hunt did not come alive from the field thereafter, finishing 2-of-12, but did convert 7-of-8 free throws. The Tigers converted 16-of-24 (67 percent) of their attempts from the line in the second half to bounce back from missing six of seven to start the game.

Cooper finished 5-of-9 from the floor and Chris Douglas-Roberts scored 19 points on 9-of-16 shooting for Memphis, which built a 22-point lead midway through the second half.

"I thought our guys did a good job to battle and stay within 10 points at halftime," Lamar coach Steve Roccaforte said. "They're a good team, and they run their stuff offensively. They hit us with a little run a couple of minutes into the second half, and I was trying to hang on to that one timeout."

Robert Dozier scored 13 points and grabbed eight rebounds and Joey Dorsey chipped in 11 and seven for the Tigers, who were matched on the boards, 49-49.

"Hats off to Roc," Calipari said of his counterpart. "I think he's done a great job with that team. I think they're doing a great job defensively. They jam up the middle, and they're big."

James Davis scored 20 points and Currye Todd added 13 for the Cardinals (5-8), who dropped to 0-6 on the road this season.

    --- --- -----
    LAMAR 28 34 62
    MEMPHIS (23) 38 49 87 FINAL

    Dec 28 10:06 PM

    LAMAR 28

    Dec 28 8:57 PM