Dec. 7, 2013
HOUSTON, Texas - It took every last second of regulation and three overtime periods to decide the game, but Max Guercy's three-pointer at the final buzzer finished off a 96-93 win for Rice University men's basketball over South Alabama on Saturday evening at Tudor Fieldhouse.
Guercy scored the Owls' (4-5) last seven points over the game's final 90 seconds as the team erased a 93-89 hole to pull out the victory. On the day, the sophomore scored 20 points with nine rebounds and five of Rice's 24 assists. He shot 6-of-10 from the field, 3-of-5 from downtown and did not commit a turnover in 45 minutes of action.
Guercy's late heroics aside, Sean Obi looked to be the player of the game as the freshman notched 25 points and 19 rebounds to establish new season highs. He fouled out with a 9-of-16 shooting mark and 7-of-11 tally at the foul line in 41 minutes. He notched his second double-double of the season by halftime, tallying 10 points and 11 rebounds in the first 20 minutes.
Obi's post presence helped the Owls own a 30-12 margin on points in the paint and shoot 46.8 from the field. The Jaguars (5-4) notched a 37.7 percent mark from the field and knocked down 17-of-37 three-pointers on the night.
Rice shot 50 percent in the first half and worked up to its largest halftime lead of the season at 38-23. South Alabama erased a 17-point deficit with 10 minutes to play in regulation and the teams played it close the remainder of the half, leading to a 67-67 tie through 40 minutes.
Austin Ramljak knocked down 5-of-12 three-pointers for 15 points to accompany four assists and a pair of rebounds, while Keith Washington scored in double figures for the fourth game in a row with 15 points of his own. The sophomore grabbed five rebounds to accompany four assists and a 6-of-13 mark from the field.
Seth Gearhart fouled out with four points, four assists and a steal in 33 minutes. Ross Wilson returned from an injury to sink 4-of-5 shots from the floor, finishing with nine points and five rebounds off the bench.
South Alabama's Antoine Allen led the visitors with 26 points and six three-pointers and two others, including Houston native Augustine Rubit, tallied double-doubles in the setback.
Rice takes a break to concentrate on final exams before returning to the court on Dec. 19 to host Northwood. Tipoff at Tudor Fieldhouse is set for 11:30 a.m. in that game.