CINCINNATI (AP) — Point guard Cashmere Wright set a career high with six 3-pointers, and Sean Kilpatrick scored 19 of his 23 points in the first half Saturday, keeping No. 11 Cincinnati unbeaten with a 92-60 victory over Maryland-Eastern Shore.
The Bearcats (9-0) have opened the season with nine wins for only the 10th time in school history. They also did it in during the 2010-11 season, winning their first 15 games.
Cincinnati moved up to No. 11 this week — its highest ranking since it finished the 2003-04 season at No. 11 — off impressive wins over Iowa State, Oregon and Alabama. The Bearcats had back-to-back home games this week against overmatched teams.
They set a school record with 23 steals during an 87-53 win over Arkansas-Little Rock on Thursday, getting easy baskets in transition off 32 turnovers. This time, they hit open shots against a team that has lost all of its games by double-digits.
Wright finished with 20 points and nine assists.
Kyree Jones led the Hawks (0-9) with 25 points. The Hawks shot 29.9 percent from the field.
The Hawks are one of the nation's worst shooting teams, making only 34 percent from the field and 23.7 percent behind the arc. They missed 22 of their first 24 shots — six of them were swatted away — while falling behind 32-10.
One of the loudest ovations came during a timeout when the public address announcer told the crowd that Tommy Tuberville would be introduced as the next Cincinnati football coach on the basketball court after the game.
Coach Mick Cronin wasn't happy with the Bearcats' half-court offense during the win over Arkansas-Little Rock. The Bearcats had no problems finding open shots against a much smaller defense on Saturday.
Cincinnati opened with an 18-8 run that included 10 points by Kilpatrick. The Hawks went only 2 of 15 during and shot three air balls on one possession. Four of their shots were swatted away.
Wright hit a pair of long 3s against a defense that let him shot away, and made his first five from beyond the arc overall. He had 15 points while Cincinnati pushed the lead to 32-10.
The Bearcats used 10 players in the first half — one more than Maryland-Eastern Shore had on its bench — while pulling ahead 52-23 at halftime. Kilpatrick had 19 points in the half on 8-of-11 shooting, while Wright made all five of his shots from behind the arc for 15 points.
The two guards started the second half resting on the bench. Forward Justin Jackson hit a 3 over the Hawks' soft defense, leaving him 2 for 18 career behind the arc. Wright got into the game and missed his first shot from behind the arc, ending his streak at five straight 3s. He finished 6 of 7.
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