Jan. 20, 2013
DALLAS- Rice fell 73-51 to Conference USA leaders SMU on Sunday. Jessica Kuster led the Owls with 16 points.
"Give a lot of credit to SMU," said Rice head coach Greg Williams. "We had a little too much Keena Mays and Akil Simpson, combining for 41 points. Mays has given this SMU team a real lift since becoming eligible."
"We're struggling right now, and we know that," added Williams. "We need to get back into our defensive mind-set."
"We have another tough team coming in with UTEP this week and we need to get back to our defensive principles," said Williams.
The Owls (9-8, 1-3 C-USA) jumped out to an 11-8 lead, with eight of those points belonging to Christal Porter, before SMU went on a 8-0 run to bring the Mustangs ahead. SMU took a nine-point lead into the half, leading 40-31. The Owls started the game with assists on their first 10 made baskets, and ended up with 16 for the game.
SMU's (13-4, 4-0 C-USA) first four field goals in the second half were 3-pointers, which gave SMU an 54-38 lead, which was too much for the Owls to overcome.
Jessica Kuster scored 16 points with five rebounds, two assists, two blocks and a steal. She has scored in double figures in 15 of 17 games the season.
Christal Porter reached double figures for the third consecutive game, scoring 14 points and collecting eight rebounds.
Nakachi Maduka led the Owls with four assists.
Rice outscored SMU 20-8 on second-chance points.
Rice returns to action on January 24 at 7 p.m., as they host defending C-USA Champion UTEP, who are receiving votes in both national polls. Tickets can be purchased here.