Nov. 7, 2013
WBB Prairie View Game Notes
Rice Owls (0-0, 0-0 C-USA) at Prairie View A&M Panthers (0-0, 0-0 SWAC)
Game 1 Friday, November 9, 2013 7 p.m.
Prairie View, Texas William Nicks Building (6,500)
Audio: RiceOwls.com TV: None
Twitter: Follow in-game tweets/updates at @RiceWBasketball
Series Record: Rice leads, 10-3
Last Meeting: W, 57-42 (11/8/12) at Tudor Fieldhouse
Owls Open 2013-14 Campaign
Rice begins its 2013-14 season by traveling to Prairie View A&M's William Nicks Building Friday evening. The Owls are led by ninth year head coach Greg Williams, who has led the Owls to four postseason appearances in eight years. On the floor, last year's C-USA Defensive Player of the Year, senior Jessica Kuster, leads the Owls, and takes on All-SWAC first-teamer Larissa Scott.
Briefly On The Owls
Senior Jessica Kuster, the reigning C-USA Defensive Player of the Year, was named to the 2013-14 C-USA Preseason Team.
Jessica Kuster was named the 2012-13 C-USA Defensive Player of the Year and moved into eighth on Rice's all-time scoring list (1,453 points). The senior needs just 399 points to become the Owls all-time leading scorer. Kuster also moved into third place in Rice history in career rebounds (976). She needs just 214 more to pass Lauren Neaves all-time mark.
Jessica Kuster is one of only two seniors in America that averaged a double-double in their first three seasons, joining Middle Tennessee's Ebony Rowe.
Prairie View A&M is the first of six scheduled opponents that advanced to the 2013 NCAA Tournament and one of 16 that advanced to the postseason. The Panthers are coming off their third straight NCAA appearance and fifth in the past seven years.
Rice is 27-8 in season openers.
The Last Meeting
|Prairie View A&M||42
November 9, 2012
Rice vs. Prairie View A&M
Rice and Prairie View A&M have played four times since 2007-08, with the two teams splitting 2-2. Last season the Owls hosted Prairie View A&M in the season opener, downing the Panthers 57-42 in Tudor Fieldhouse. The Owls and Panthers played three times in 1978-79, and after that year, the Owls own a 8-0 mark against Prairie View in Tudor Fieldhouse.
Owls In Season Openers
Rice is 27-8 in season openers, dating back to 1978-79, the first year of data. Last season was the first time the Owls opened at home since the 2008-09 season.
The Gang's All Here
Rice returns four starters and 10-of-12 letterwinners from last season's team. The Owls bring back 87 percent of scoring and 90 percent of rebounding from a year ago with the departure of seniors Jessica Goswitz and Zoe Rogers.
Kuster Named Defensive Player Of The Year; Named All-Defensive For Third Time
Last season Jessica Kuster became the first Rice player to win a conference Defensive Player of the Year award, and was named to the C-USA All-Defensive Team for the third straight year. She is the fourth three-time C-USA All-Defensive Team selection in league history, and the first for the Owls. Lauren Neaves is the only other Owl to be named to three all-defensive teams, earning the honor in the WAC (2003-04, 2004-05) and C-USA (2006-07).
Three Straight All-C-USA First Team Selections For Kuster
Junior Jessica Kuster was named First Team All-C-USA for the third straight year, becoming the first Owl to be named to three C-USA First Teams, and only the eighth player to make three All-C-USA First Teams in league history. Lauren Neaves is the only other Rice player to be named to three all-conference first teams, receiving the honor once in the WAC (2003-04) and twice in C-USA (2005-06, 2006-07).
Rice is 38-18 since 2009-10 at Tudor Fieldhouse. The Owls were 13-3 at home in the calendar year of 2012 and 12-4 in the 2012-13 season, which included a seven-game winning streak early in the year. The Owls take a modest three-game streak into 2013-14.
The Bags Are Packed
Including 17 games in Texas, the Owls will play games in 10 states this season, spanning from the Omni Hotels Classic in Boulder, Colorado to Atlantic coast contests in Florida and North Carolina.
2013-14 marks the first year of the new alignment of C-USA, which had not changed since Rice entered the league for 2005-06. C-USA adds Louisiana Tech, Old Dominion, Charlotte, UTSA, FIU, North Texas, Middle Tennessee and Florida Atlantic for 2013-14. Louisiana Tech won the 1982 and 1988 NCAA Championships, and has ten Final Four appearances; Old Dominion won the 1985 NCAA Championship and has three Final Four appearances; Charlotte has made 10 consecutive postseason appearances; UTSA has won five conference championships since 2000; FIU has made 13 postseason appearances; North Texas engineered one of the nation's best turnarounds in 2011-12; Middle Tennessee has reached the NCAA Tournament in nine of the last 10 seasons, including two selections as an at-large, and FAU reached the NCAA Tournament in 2006.