Jan. 29, 2014
SAN ANTONIO, Texas - Rice University men's basketball returns to the road for a pair of games this week, beginning on Thursday night at UTSA. The 8 p.m. contest will be televised on CSS and CSN Houston.
The Owls (6-13, 1-5 C-USA) look to make it two in a row as the team captured its first Conference USA win of the season on Saturday with a tight 71-69 win over Charlotte.
Rice has had several players post impressive games lately, including notable performances last week from Sean Obi and Seth Gearhart. Obi tallied 22 points and 17 rebounds against Marshall while Gearhart notched 16 points with four three-pointers in the win over Charlotte.
Rice rallied back from a 19-10 deficit to take a lead on Charlotte that it would not relinquish in a 71-69 win at Tudor Fieldhouse on Saturday evening. The Owls knocked down 12-of-24 three-pointers on the night, led by four each from Gearhart and Ramljak, to help put away the 49ers.
Once Rice took a 23-21 lead, the team never relinquished control in the win. Charlotte pulled back within one point in the final minute, but the Owls sank 5-of-6 free throws down the stretch to preserve the victory.
Rice Falls to UTSA
UTSA senior guard Joey Shank matched a career high with 26 points and Omar Johnson set a new career mark with 21 as the Roadrunners topped Rice, 78-75, in Tudor Fieldhouse Thursday night.
Series History (UTSA leads, 4-2)
The new conference rivals met six times between 1982 and 2008.
Rice is 0-2 in San Antonio after a 58-51 setback on March 3, 1982 and an 80-65 loss on Dec. 10, 1984.
In the lone meeting since the 80s, Cory Pflieger paced the Owls with 21 points on 7-of-9 shooting but the visiting Roadrunners prevailed in the end, 78-75, on Dec. 4, 2008.
Rice shot an impressive 57.7 percent from the field and 7-of-12 from downtown, but UTSA knocked down 13 three-pointers and benefitted from 19 Owls turnovers to come away with the win.
Scouting the Roadrunners (6-12, 2-3 C-USA)
UTSA won its first two conference games at home before taking to the road and dropping three-straight.
The Roadrunners are 5-5 at home with a three-game winning streak at the UTSA Convocation Center.
Despite starting in just seven of his 15 games played, Keon Lewis leads the team in scoring at 14.1 points per game as well as a team-high 46 assists.
Devon Agusi is one of three other UTSA players to average double figures with 11.8 points per game on 46.3 percent shooting.
The team rebounds very evenly with no player hauling in more than 6.0 rebounds per game. However, UTSA holds a slight +0.7 rebound advantage over its opponents on the year.
The team turns the ball over 16.3 times per game and allows opponents to convert 48.1 percent of their field goal attempts, including 38.8 percent of three-pointers.
Jordan Sims ranks third in the league with 2.89 three-pointers per game. As a team, UTSA averages 5.83 treys per contest.
In last Saturday's contest against UTEP, three players tallied double figures with 11 points each, but the Miners shot 55.6 percent from the field and took advantage of a 34-27 rebound margin to claim an 81-62 win in El Paso.
Head coach Brooks Thompson is in his eighth season at the helm of UTSA.
Following Thursday's contest, the Owls head west to El Paso for a Saturday night meeting against UTEP. The game tips off at 8 p.m. CT.