Houston upsets No. 21 Washington to win Diamond Head Classic

Houston players celebrate after defeating Washington to win the Diamond Head Classic in Honolulu on Dec. 25, 2019.
Houston players celebrate after defeating Washington to win the Diamond Head Classic in Honolulu on Wednesday.
(Marco Garcia / Associated Press)
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Fabian White Jr. and Caleb Mills scored 19 points each to help Houston rally to a 75-71 win over No. 21 Washington in the title game of the Diamond Head Classic on Wednesday.

The Cougars (10-3) trailed by as many as 14 points in the first half, but outscored the Huskies (10-3) 44-35 after halftime to win their fourth straight. White shot seven of 13 from the field and made all five of his free throws to finish with a career-high in points scored and earn the tournament’s most outstanding player honors. Mills made three of his team’s eight three-pointers.

Houston shot 17 of 18 (94.4%) as a team from the free-throw line, making their final six.

Washington took a 35-21 lead with 6:01 left until halftime on Isaiah Stewart’s free throw, but Houston closed out the first half with a 10-1 run to get within 36-31 at the break. Stewart finished with 25 points while Nahziah Carter added 15.


Quade Green had 11 points and seven assists and Jaden McDaniels added 10 points in the loss. Washington committed 15 turnovers to seven for Houston. There were five ties and 10 lead changes.

In other games at the Diamond Head Classic:

— Michael Devoe scored 18 points and Moses Wright added 16 to help Georgia Tech rally past Hawaii 70-53 for third place. The Yellow Jackets (6-6) shot 50% and erased a nine-point, second-half deficit to hand the Rainbow Warriors (8-5) their second straight loss. Hawaii was outscored 41-21 in the second half, when it shot just 22.2% from the field. It was 16-of-44 shooting (36.4%) for the game.

— Derrick Alston had a game-high 23 points along with nine rebounds and six assists to lead Boise State (8-5) to a 72-67 victory over UTEP (9-4) in the fifth-place game.

— Ishmael El-Amin scored 15 of his 18 points in the second half and Luke Bumbalough added 14 points as Ball State topped Portland 61-46 for seventh place.