Mean Green Clip Owls, 53-48
Jan. 10, 2015
DENTON, Texas - Eleven different Rice Owls registered points Saturday afternoon at the Super Pit but an 11-5 run by the Mean Green women's basketball team over the final four minutes of the second half proved to be the difference in a 53-48 loss.
Rice (6-8, 1-2) concluded a season-long four-game road trip with a 1-3 record and will now get to play five of their next seven contests at Tudor Fieldhouse. Junior forward Megan Palmer came off the bench Saturday to lead the Owls in both scoring (9 points) and rebounds (8) while Maya Hawkins, Alyssa Lang and Christal Porter all scored six points apiece.
The Owls shot just 33 percent for the game and committed 23 turnovers, 14 in the second half, that were converted into 21 points for the Mean Green (2-12, 1-2). Rice lost despite outscoring the Mean Green bench, 26-5 and winning the rebounding battle, 46-33.
"We're struggling to score right now and we know that," Rice head coach Greg Williams said. "We had another poor shooting performance. Our last two games we've struggled at the free throw line and had an issue with turnovers, which makes it very hard to win on the road. We tried to make an adjustment on their screen roll game and then they start making jumpers. I thought we did a good job on the boards but a combination of poor shooting and turnovers, which they converted into points, was the difference."
North Texas had three players score in double-figures, led by a game-high 15 points from both Candice Adams and BreAnna Dawkins. North Texas shot 44 percent from the field in the second half, 40 percent for the game, and made 12-of-18 attempts at the free throw line.
Rice erased a 37-29 deficit in the second half by taking a 43-42 lead with 4:23 remaining before North Texas closed strong.
The Owls ended the first half on a 15-5 run to take a 27-23 lead into the locker room at halftime, doing so in spectacular fashion. After trailing 18-12 with 10:50 remaining in the half, the Owls responded by scoring 12 of the game's next 17 points. Then with 1.3 seconds remaining after a North Texas turnover, Megan Palmer received an inbounds pass at midcourt and launched a three-pointer that hit nothing but the bottom of the net to push the lead to 27-23.
Rice didn't have a single player with more than five points in the opening 20 minutes but nine different Owls registered points, including a 12-5 advantage in bench points over the Mean Green. The Owls outrebounded (23-16) North Texas and had the advantage in second chance points (7-1) and points off turnovers (12-8).
The Owls will finally return home next Thursday to host Old Dominion (6 p.m.) for their first game at Tudor Fieldhouse since Dec. 28.