CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas - Shay Weaver's three-pointer with 20 seconds remaining in the fourth quarter proved to be the game-winner in Texas A&M-Corpus Christi's 60-55 victory over the Rice Owls Wednesday evening at the Dugan Wellness Center.
Rice (0-2) was led in scoring by junior forward Jasmine Goodwine, who scored 12 points on 4-of-7 shooting (4-of-4 from the free throw line) and grabbed a team-high seven rebounds. Freshman guard Gabrielle Stanton chipped in nine points off the bench by making all three of her attempts from beyond the arc. Fellow freshmen Lauren Grigsby also contributed seven points and five rebounds off the bench.
The Owls outshot the Islanders, 42.9-42.6 percent, won the rebounding battle (33-30), and had more points in the paint (20-18). However, the Islanders hurt Rice by making 9-of-21 (43 percent) from three-point territory.
"We had some really great moments tonight," Rice head coach Tina Langley said. "This is a young team that's learning and growing every day."
After the Islanders took the opening quarter, 12-9, the Owls bounced back with a 19-point second quarter to take a 28-25 lead into halftime. Grigsby scored all seven of her points in the second quarter and helped spark a 9-0 Rice run in which the Owls opened up a lead as large as 28-23
Goodwine led the Owls' offensive charge in the third quarter with eight points but the Islanders kept the score close entering the fourth quarter, trailing just 43-41.
Rice went on an 8-0 run to start the fourth quarter on a pair of three-pointers from Stanton and a fast break layup by Shani Rainey to take a 51-43 advantage with 7:33 left in the game. However, Weaver would eventually pull the Islanders even at 53-53 with one of her four made three-pointers with just under two minutes remaining.
After the two teams traded baskets, Weaver gave the Islanders the lead for good with the three-pointer out of the right corner with 20 seconds remaining. Rice had one last opportunity to extend the game but missed a pair of close range shots.
The Islanders (1-2) were led in scoring by Weaver (20 points), and also got double-figure scoring performances from Kassie Jones (12 points) and Brittany Mbamalu (12 points).
The Owls will next set their eyes on the No. 8 ranked Texas Longhorns, who Rice will host on Saturday in the home opener with tip-off set for 2 p.m.