Dec. 17, 2013
HOUSTON, Texas – Despite an unconventional 11:30 a.m. start time for a Thursday men’s basketball game against Northwood, Rice University’s Tudor Fieldhouse will be packed with roughly 4,000 students from more than 20 local elementary schools for the first-ever “School House Mania.” Limited tickets for the game remain at the Rice Athletics Ticket Office.
While the teams compete against each other for the first time on the hardwood, the students in attendance will have a fun and educational field trip, including workbooks and on-court promotions for the students. For a large portion of the schools, it won’t be the first interaction with Rice Basketball, as the players and coaching staff make regular visits to schools across Houston to promote healthy lifestyles and an anti-bullying message.
The Owls (4-5) return from a long break for final exams, having last played on Dec. 7 in a triple-overtime thriller against South Alabama. Rice prevailed in the 55-minute contest when Max Guercy sank a three-pointer at the buzzer to lift the home team, 96-93. The sophomore guard finished with 20 points and a career-best nine rebounds.
The game was also a chance for freshman Sean Obi to shine, as he racked up 25 points and 19 rebounds in the win, which matched the longest in program history.
Rice’s win over the Jaguars was the fourth in a row to be decided by four or fewer points, and seventh in nine games on the season to come down to the final possession in regulation.
• Thursday is the first meeting between Rice and Northwood.
• Northwood dropped an 85-76 decision to St. Thomas, which Rice faced in its season opener.
• The Knights have faced Conference USA newcomer North Texas earlier this season, a 72-67 setback in Denton. NT and St. Thomas will be the only common opponents for the teams this season as Northwood plays Sooner Athletic Conference opponents the remainder of the 2013-14 season.
Scouting the Knights (2-4)
• Northwood fell to 2-4 on the season after a 105-75 setback against Texas A&M-Commerce on Dec. 11.
• Everrett Pleasant leads the team with 19.8 points per game, including four 20-point performances in a row. The Houston native also hauls in 13.0 rebounds per game.
• Rice and Houston renew their rivalry as the teams square off in the Dickies Shootout at the downtown Toyota Center on Saturday.
• The game is set to tip off at 3:30 p.m. and will be broadcast on CSS and CSN Houston.
• It is part of a double-header, as Oklahoma and Texas A&M will play that evening.