Tampa, FL (SportsNetwork.com) - Sean Kilpatrick scored 18 points to lead the No. 19 Cincinnati Bearcats to a 61-54 win over the South Florida Bulls.
Shaquille Thomas chipped in with 10 points for Cincinnati (17-2, 6-0 AAC), which extended its winning streak to 10 games.
Javontae Hawkins paced South Florida (10-8, 1-4) with 15 points off the bench, while Victor Rudd contributed 12 points with nine rebounds and John Egbunu added 10 points in the setback. The Bulls have lost four of their last five games.
Cincinnati led 22-16 after a pair of free throws from Troy Caupain, but South Florida grabbed its first lead of the game courtesy of an 8-0 run. Hawkins made a three during the spurt and capped it with a layup to help the Bulls to a 24-22 lead with 2:40 left in the first half.
Ge'Lawn Guyn answered with consecutive treys around a Rudd jumper and Thomas knocked down two at the line to give the Bearcats a 30-26 lead at the half.
Hawkins added four points to a 10-4 run that tied the game at 47-47 with 8 1/2 minutes left in the game, but Jermaine Sanders quickly answered with a trey to put the Bearcats back in front.
The 3-pointer started an elongated 11-2 run that spanned nearly six minutes. Titus Rubles added four points to the sequence and Justin Jackson capped it with an emphatic slam to stretch the lead to 58-49 with 2 1/2 minutes to play.
South Florida was held without a basket for just over four minutes as the Bearcats crept away.
Rudd responded with a jumper before Hawkins canned another 3-pointer to cut the deficit to 58-54. South Florida's comeback effort proved to be for naught as Cincinnati made enough free throws down the stretch.
Kilpatrick was 7-for-17 from the field ... South Florida outrebounded Cincinnati 36-30 ... The Bearcats shot 7-of-19 from beyond the arc, while the Bulls converted just 2-of-9 attempts.