Owls Nearly Pull Off Upset, Fall to ODU in C-USA Championship
March 11, 2015
BIRMINGHAM, AL - The No. 12 seed Rice Owls women's basketball team gave No. 5 Old Dominion everything they could handle and then some but a late scoring drought proved to be the downfall for the Owls in a 62-57 loss to the Lady Monarchs in the opening round of the C-USA Championship.
Rice (9-21, 4-14) was led in scoring by sophomore forward Jasmine Goodwine, who scored a team-high 18 points on 8-of-15 shooting (2-of-2 at the FT line), while also contributing nine rebounds, five blocks (career-high) and four assists (career-high).
Senior Christal Porter, who played her final game as an Owl, had first half foul problems but still finished with 10 rebounds, her 20th double-figure rebounding effort of the season and 13th straight.
ODU (19-11, 11-7) completed a 3-0 season sweep of the Owls by having three players score in double-digits, led by Jennie Simms' game-high 19 points. Odegua Oigbokie (12 points) and Tiffany Minor (10 points) also scored in double-figures for the Lady Monarchs.
"I'm very proud of my team, we may have been the No. 12 seed but we didn't play like that tonight," Rice head coach Greg Williams said. "They really hurt us on the boards. We're not used to that happening to our team. That combined with some crucial turnovers late in the game really hurt us. One of our strengths (rebounding) ended up being our Achilles heel tonight."
ODU outrebounded the Owls 47-33, which included a 22-11 difference on the offensive glass. The Lady Monarchs capitalized on the second chance opportunities by outscoring the Owls 25-8.
Rice outscored ODU 34-32 in the opening half by shooting 42 percent from the field and 11 points from Goodwine. The Owls also made 7-of-8 free throw attempts and had just five turnovers.
In the second half Rice never trailed by more than five points and a Shani Rainey (nine points) steal and coast-to-coast layup brought the Owls to with 58-57 with just 2:45 remaining. The Owls then forced a turnover and called a timeout but immediately turned the ball over on the inbounds off a steal by ODU"S Ashley Betz-White that resulted in a layup and a 60-57 deficit.
Rice would proceed to turn the ball over on their next two possessions as well and a Porter three-point attempt bounced off the iron with just eight seconds remaining and the Owls down 62-57.
Along with Porter, Wednesday's game marked the final for seniors Maya Adetula, Nakachi Maduka, Reem Moussa and Megan Shafer.