Feb. 22, 2014
RUSTON, La. - Three Owls scored in double-figures and Jessica Kuster broke the Rice all-time single-season rebounding record in a 61-56 win over the Louisiana Tech Lady Techsters Saturday evening at the Thomas Assembly Center.
Rice (12-14, 5-8) won their second consecutive conference road game by holding the Lady Techsters (8-18, 3-10) to just 28 percent shooting (17-of-60), the second-lowest percentage the Owls have allowed all season.
Kuster notched her 23rd double-double of the season with a game-high 19 points and 14 rebounds, along with five assists, two steals and a block in 39 minutes. The double-double was the 64th of her career and is now just one shy of tying the Conference USA record (65) held by former TCU Horned Frog, Sandora Irvin.
Kuster added another school record to her resume late in the second half on her 11th rebound of the night, becoming the Owls single-season rebounding record holder. The San Antonio, Texas native, who now has 349 rebounds on the season, surpassed former Owl great Lauren Neaves' single-season rebounding record of 344 set in 2005-06.
Kuster was joined in double-figures by junior guard Nakachi Maduka, who recorded her seventh double-digit scoring performance of the season with 15 points on 6-of-11 shooting and a career-high three blocks. Maduka also secured a critical offensive rebound late in the game that sealed the victory for the Owls.
Junior forward Christal Porter was the third Owl in double-figures with 13 points and 11 rebounds for her second double-double of the season and the second in her last three games.
Rice outscored Louisiana Tech 36-26 in points in the paint and had their fourth-lowest turnover output of the season with 12. Rice held the lead for the majority of the game and only trailed by as much as one point with 10 minutes left in the first half.
Louisiana Tech was led in scoring by Whitney Frazier and Lulu Perry, each of whom scored 14 points but made just 5-of-24 shots from the floor.
The Owls took a 23-20 advantage into halftime behind 11 points from Kuster and a defensive effort in which the Owls held the Lady Techsters to just 21 percent shooting.
Rice now returns home for two games, beginning Wednesday, Feb. 26 when they host North Texas at 7 p.m. The Owls will then host UTEP on March 1 and will be honoring Kuster for senior day in a contest that tips off at 11 a.m.