Jan. 13, 2013
The Owls (9-6, 1-1 C-USA) jumped out to a 6-0 lead forcing Tulsa (5-10, 0-2 C-USA) to call timeout by 17:47 of the first half, and extended their lead to a 17-8 margin, before Tulsa came roaring back and took a 29-27 lead into the break, in a first half that featured four ties and five lead changes.
Megan Palmer hit a jumper with 2:56 remaining that gave the Owls a 53-51 lead, putting the Owls up for good. Tulsa had a chance to tie down two points and under a minute remaining, but Jessica Kuster stole the ball and hit a free throw. On the ensuing possession, the final possession of the game, Megan Palmer blocked Tulsa's final shot, and could not fire up a 3-pointer before time expired.
"I'm proud of the team," said Rice Head Coach Greg Williams. "It was a really hard-fought game. Give Tulsa a lot of credit, they came in here and battled."
"Both teams came in here after losing the opening conference game, so it was very important for us to win and protect our home court," said Williams.
Christal Porter had the first double-double of her career, scoring 11 points and matching her career high with 15 rebounds.
Jessica Kuster posted her ninth double-double of the season and the 36th of her career with 18 points and 12 rebounds. Kuster added in four blocks, two assists and two steals to her totals, never coming off the floor in the game.
Nakachi Maduka matched her career-high with 13 points, her third double-digit scoring effort of the season. She picked up a season-high three steals and three assists as well.
Rice outscored Tulsa 26-14 in the paint.
The Owls return to the court Thursday as they host Tulane at Tudor Fieldhouse. Tip is set for 7 p.m. and tickets can be purchased here.