No. 18 Texas A&M 82-Rice 76 (PDF Box Score)
COLLEGE STATION, Texas - The Rice Owls women's basketball team came up just short in an upset bid at No. 18 Texas A&M Wednesday evening, falling 82-76 at Reed Arena.
Rice (5-2) led for half of the final quarter and pulled to within 70-69 with 3:36 remaining in the contest before the Aggies (6-1) outscored the Owls 12-7 the rest of the way.
"I'm really proud of our team," Rice head coach Tina Langley said. "We grew a lot from our last game and I'm proud of our fight and the way we executed most of the night."
Rice had four players score in double-figures, led by Erica Ogwumike's game-high 26 points. The reigning Conference USA Player of the Week surpassed the 20-point plateau for a third straight game by making 11-of-13 shots from the field, including 3-of-5 from three-point territory. Ogwumike scored 12 of the Owls 21 fourth quarter points.
Nicole Iademarco added an additional 18 points and made 4-of-6 from beyond the arc while Olivia Ogwumike scored 14 points and also made 4-of-6 attempts from deep. Senior Wendy Knight contributed two made three-pointers as part of her 10 points and dished out a career-best eight assists. Junior Lauren Grigsby provided a boost off the bench with eight points (two made three-pointers) and a team-high three steals in 26 minutes.
The Owls set a single-game school record with 15 made three-pointers, besting the previous best mark of 12 set versus Iona (2000) and Tulane (2011). Rice also established a new Reed Arena record for three-pointers made by a single team, shattering the old mark of 11.
"We have such an unselfish team," Langley said. "Tonight we did a good job sharing the basketball and making the right decisions and reads."
Rice matched the Aggies with a 55 percent clip shooting from the field and recorded 21 team assists on their 27 made field goals.
"They run their offense as well as anyone that we have faced this year," Texas A&M head coach Gary Blair said. "That was just a good job and Tina (Langley) does a great job with them."
The Owls outscored A&M 25-17 in the opening quarter thanks to sizzling shooting, making 10-of-16 (63 percent) shots from the field and 5-of-9 from three-point territory. Erica Ogwumike paced the Owls with nine points in the period and Iademarco added an additional eight points.
The Aggies used a 10-1 run in the final 3:41 of the second quarter to take a 36-33 lead over the Owls going to the break.
Rice proceeded to outscore A&M 22-19 in the third quarter behind six made three-pointers, three of which came from Olivia Ogwumike, including two made long balls in the final 1:31 to help the Owls tie the game 55-55 going to the fourth.
The Owls opened the final period with a 7-0 run that forced A&M to burn a timeout with Rice leading 62-57. The Aggies responded to take the lead and although an Erica Ogwumike three-pointer brought the Owls to within 70-69, A&M used a mini 6-0 run to gain separation and prevail to victory.
Rice will now have nine days off before playing in their next game on Dec. 9 versus Incarnate Word (2 p.m.).