Jan. 2, 2014
HOUSTON, Texas - Rice University men's basketball closes out its regular season non-conference schedule on Saturday with a home tilt against Harvard. Tipoff is set for 7 p.m. at Tudor Fieldhouse and the game will air nationally on CBS Sports Network.
The Owls (5-7) are 3-2 at home on the season, including a two-game winning streak at Tudor Fieldhouse.
Rice continues to lead Conference USA in defensive rebound percentage, hauling in 75.7 percent of opponents' missed shots. The Owls allow fewer than 9.0 second-chance points per game.
Sean Obi stands fourth in the league in rebounding with 9.4 boards per contest. The freshman ranks fifth in C-USA with a 60.0 percent field goal mark as well.
In their last outing, the Owls suffered a 66-44 setback at Texas on Monday, as the squad struggled to find its shooting touch against the Longhorns. Obi led the squad with 10 points and 12 rebounds to record his fourth double-double of the season, but the outside shooters connected on just 6-of-29 three-pointers. Texas also benefitted from a 42-29 rebound margin and a 27-7 advantage in free throw attempts.
Harvard Shoots Past Men's Basketball, 92-62
Rice University men's basketball was unable to overcome an outstanding shooting performance in a 92-62 setback at Harvard on Saturday afternoon. Max Guercy led the Owls with a season-best 19 points on 6-of-8 shooting, including a 4-of-4 mark from beyond the arc. The freshman guard added five of Rice's (3-10) seven assists and swiped a steal, but the Crimson shot 64.6 percent from the field to build an insurmountable lead beginning late in the first half.
Harvard claimed its second-straight win in the series last season with a 92-62 triumph over the Owls.
Rice is 1-0 at home against Harvard following a 67-63 win on Dec. 17, 2008 in the first-ever meeting between the programs.
The Crimson took its revenge the following season with an 85-64 win in Cambridge.
Max Guercy scored 19 points against Harvard last season, including a 4-of-4 mark from downtown to accompany five assists. Austin Ramljak added seven points and Seth Gearhart scored six. Tamir Jackson added 14 points and nine rebounds for Rice.
Former Rice assistant coach Adam Cohen joined the Harvard staff last summer.
Scouting the Crimson (12-1)
Harvard won its eighth-straight on Wednesday night with a 73-58 victory over Boston College.
Wesley Saunders leads the team with 15.5 points per game. The Crimson shoots 47.1 percent from the field while limiting opponents to just a 40.6 percent clip.
Each of the team's five starters averages at least 8.4 points per game.
Harvard is 3-1 on the road this season, with the lone setback coming at No. 20 Colorado, 70-62, in November.
Eight of the Crimson's 12 wins have been by double figures, including an overtime win at Boston University.
Rice opens C-USA play next Thursday against league newcomer FIU. Five of the Owls' league home opponents are new to C-USA this season. Tipoff against the Panthers is set for 7 p.m.