CINNCINATI (AP) - Nysier Brooks had a career-high 17 points and eight rebounds, and Cincinnati relied heavily upon its reserves Saturday while pulling away to a 77-56 victory over South Carolina State.
The Bearcats (11-2) were coming off their most impressive win of the season, 93-64 over UCLA on Wednesday night in front of a raucous home crowd. The Bearcats dominated every phase while sending the Bruins to their most lopsided defeat in nearly four years.
They ground out a win on Saturday with their starters playing limited roles. Jarron Cumberland added 12 points.
The Bulldogs (2-13) cut a 23-point deficit to 12 in the second half, taking advantage of Cincinnati's poor shooting. The Bearcats missed their first eight shots from beyond the arc in the half. Cumberland hit back-to-back 3s to blunt the comeback, and then hit another as Cincinnati pulled away in the closing minutes.
Janai Raynor Powell led the Bulldogs with 15 points.
South Carolina State was only 5 of 25 from the field in the first half, when it fell behind by 23 points.
Cincinnati took advantage of the chance to get playing time for its reserves. Coach Mick Cronin used 11 players in the first 7 minutes. Cumberland, the Bearcats' leading scorer, played only 7 minutes in the first half and took one shot. He had 25 points against UCLA.
0-FOR-4 VS. BUCKEYE STATE
With the loss, South Carolina State fell to 0-4 against Ohio teams this season. The Bulldogs also have lost to Cleveland State, Ohio State, and 79-55 to Miami in Oxford, Ohio on Thursday night.
South Carolina State hosts Presbyterian on Jan. 2.
Cincinnati hosts Tulane on Jan. 2.