With the student section packed on Thursday night the UAB Blazers basketball team (16-3, 6-0) stretched their winning streak to 13 games and their home winning streak to 20 games in an impressive 82-70 win over the Rice Owls (6-13, 1-5)
Robert Brown finished with a game-high 19 points, and Nick Norton was right behind him with 18. Chris Cokley also finished in double-digits with 11 points and led the team in rebounds with eight.
UAB got out to a quick 7-2 lead, but some unforced turnovers by the Blazers allowed Rice to get back in the game and at the first media timeout UAB was up 12-9.
The Blazers stretched their lead to 20-14 by the 11:49 mark. Rice got within two at 23-21, but the Blazers went on a 7-0 run before the under eight timeout to take their lead back out to nine.
UAB led by as much as 12 in the first half and the two teams went into the break with the Blazers on top 42-32.
Robert Brown was the Blazers leading scorer at the half with 9 points.
The Owls started the second half on a 10-0 run and tied the game before a dunk by Cokley put UAB back on top at the under 16 timeout.
Rice took a brief one point lead around the 14 minute mark, but then Brown got going and at the under 12 timeout UAB was back on top 54-52.
After the break the Blazers went on a 5-0 run capped off by an alley-pop dunk by Cokley to stretch their lead back out to seven and causing Rice to call a timeout as the crowd roared. Another Cokley bucket had the Blazers up by nine at the under eight timeout.
They stayed hot out of the break and stretched their lead out to 15, 73-58, at the 4:11 mark, prompting another desperate Rice timeout.
The Owls would never recover as the Blazers were able to put this one away without any last second dramatics.
UAB played with great enthusiasm for the most part in this one other than a lapse to start the second half, but the crowd helped keep them going when things got close.
Now the Blazers will try to keep the streak alive again North Texas on Saturday at Bartow Arena at 7 p.m. Central.