Feb. 24, 2013
HOUSTON- Rice's women's basketball team rallied back from down 15 points with 7:35 remaining in regulation to force overtime and defeat Marshall 71-61 at Tudor Fieldhouse. The Owls closed the game on a 29-4 run through the last seven minutes of regulation and overtime.
"I'm very proud of the team," said Rice Head Coach Greg Williams. "You don't have many games where you're down 15 with 7:35 left to go and win. We hung in there."
"It was a very important win for us," added Williams. "We needed to protect our home court as we go on the road this week."
The Owls (12-14, 4-9 C-USA) were down 57-42 with 7:35 remaining in the contest, and went on a 17-0 run in the next seven minutes to take a 59-57 lead. Alyssa Lang scored the last four points of regulation for the Owls, tying the game with two free throws, and making a layup to briefly take the lead, before Marshall (9-17, 3-10 C-USA) tied the game with 16 seconds remaining to send the game into overtime at 59-59.
Elena Gumbs hit a 3-pointer to give the Owls a 64-61 lead with 2:27 left in overtime, which opened the floodgates for the Owls. Gumbs earned a steal on Rice's next possession, followed by a Lang free throw, a Porter put-back, and a Maduka steal-and-layup gave the Owls eight points in 71 seconds, and put the game out of reach.
This is Rice's fourth comeback of nine or more points this season, and the largest comeback for Rice since Nov. 14, 2004, when the Owls also erased a 15 point deficit against Stephen F. Austin.
The Owls' 17-0 run at the end of regulation is the largest run for Rice this season.
Marshall built a 30-22 halftime lead with eight 3-pointers on 18 attempts, including a run of three 3-pointers on three consecutive possessions. Suporia Dickens hit 5-of-8 3-pointers for Marshall in the first half, but was held to a single field goal in the second frame.
Christal Porter posted her second consecutive double-double, scoring 11 points with 11 rebounds. She scored seven of her points and grabbed four rebounds during Rice's 29-4 run to close the game.
Jessica Kuster scored 16 points to lead the Owls, adding in eight rebounds and four assists. She has reached double figures in scoring 23 times this season and 71 times in her career.
Alyssa Lang posted eight points and seven rebounds, including the last four points of regulation for the Owls.
Rice outscored Marshall 21-7 in points off turnovers and 25-8 on second chance opportunities. Rice's bench scored a season-high 26 points.
The Owls are 11-4 at home this season. This was the first overtime game of the year for both Rice and Marshall.
The Owls head to El Paso on Thursday, February 28 to play UTEP in a CBS Sports Network-televised game, which tips at 8 p.m. Rice returns to Tudor Fieldhouse on March 7th, for Senior Night at 7 p.m. Tickets for the SMU game are available here.