Feb. 15, 2014
RUSTON, La. – First-place Louisiana Tech overpowered Rice University men’s basketball in an 85-46 setback for the Owls on Saturday night at the Thomas Assembly Center.
With a three-pointer early in the second half, Austin Ramljak moved past Shawn Tyndell for sole possession of second place for longest streak of consecutive games with a trey in program history. Adam Peakes holds the record at 39-straight games. Ramljak finished with team highs of nine points and six rebounds.
The Owls (7-17, 2-9 C-USA) turned the ball over a season-high 23 times against heavy pressure from the Bulldogs (21-5, 9-2), which translated to 25 points for LA Tech. Rice shot 38.3 percent from the field compared to 48.3 for the home team and suffered from a 41-24 deficit on the glass.
Max Guercy also tied for the team scoring lead with nine points on 3-of-5 shooting. He added one rebound and a steal as well. Keith Washington passed around four of Rice’s 12 assists to accompany five points and two rebounds off the bench.
A pair of early seven-point runs helped the Bulldogs establish a double-figure lead that they would not relinquish. Meanwhile, the home team’s full-court defensive pressure caused 11 first-half turnovers by the Owls, good for 14 points. LA Tech took a 42-17 advantage into the locker room.
Rice sank all five of its three-pointers in the second half, but it only slowed the Bulldogs marginally. The Owls shot an improved 40 percent from the field but were unable to pull much closer in the final 20 minutes.
For LA Tech, Kenyon McNeail led four players in double figures with 17 points off the bench. He knocked down three three-pointers and tallied his 1,000th career point on the night.
The road trip rolls on for the Owls as the team makes its way to Old Dominion on Thursday. Tipoff is set for 6 p.m. CT on Feb. 20 in Norfolk, Va.