Nov. 29, 2013
BOULDER, Colo. – A season-high ten different Rice Owls registered points and Jessica Kuster made 12-of-13 free throw attempts to help lead the Owls to a 57-52 victory over the Samford Bulldogs in the opening game of the Omni Hotels Classic Tournament hosted by Colorado University.
Rice (4-4) had five players score six points or more and won the battle of the bench scoring, 20-15. The Owls also held Samford (1-4) to just 1-of-14 shooting from three-point territory (7.1 percent). Rice also made 13-of-14 free throws in the second half, improving from just a 9-of-17 performance in the first half.
Kuster’s nation-leading streak of seven straight double-doubles came to an end but the senior still managed to score 14 points and grab seven rebounds in 29 minutes. Kuster shot a season-low 1-of-9 from the field but made up for it by getting to the free throw line and making 12-of-13 attempts.
Freshman Jasmine Goodwine recorded a career-high 11 rebounds and Christal Porter posted nine points and seven rebounds. The Owls also got a season-high seven points from Alyssa Lang in just 11 minutes of action.
The Bulldogs were led in scoring by both Christy Robinson and Krista Stricklin, each of whom scored 12 points.
Ten different Owls registered points in the first half with Rice taking a 32-28 lead into halftime, led by seven points from Porter. Rice shot 37 percent (10-of-27) from the field in the first 20 minutes, which included three made three-pointers on just five attempts.
Rice fell behind 4-0 in the first couple minutes of the game before they went on a 13-2 run that stood up the entire first half. During that span Porter scored the Owls first five points and Maduka and Breion Allen drained the Owls first two three-pointers of the evening to open up a 13-6 lead.
The Owls had an opportunity to extend the lead going into the locker room but some struggles from the free throw line (9-of-17, 53%) allowed the Bulldogs to keep things close.
Rice now advances to the tournament championship to play No. 14 Colorado University. The game will tipoff on Saturday, Nov. 30 at approximately 8:30 p.m.