Owls To Host Texas Southern In Home Opener
Rice looking for first 2-0 start since 2008
Nov. 10, 2013
Rice Owls (1-0, 0-0 C-USA) vs. Texas Southern (1-0, 0-0 SWAC)
Game 2 • Monday, November 11, 2013 • 7 p.m.
Houston, Texas • Tudor Fieldhouse (5,750)
Audio: RiceOwls.com • TV: None • Stream: RiceOwls.com
Series Record: Rice leads, 8-6
Last Meeting: Rice won, 115-35 (11-14-97) at Tudor Fieldhouse
Owls Host Texas Southern In Home Opener
Rice returns back to Houston for their home opener following a 77-63 triumph at Prairie View A&M in the season opener last Friday. Senior forward Jessica Kuster put up a monster double-double with 33 points and 15 rebounds to lead the Owls past the 2013 NCAA Tournament team.
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, the 2012-13 C-USA Defensive Player of the Year, moved into sixth place on Rice’s all-time scoring list (1,486 points) on Friday with her 33-point performance, tying Yalonda Stiner (1990-93). The senior now needs just 366 points to become the Owls all-time leading scorer. Kuster also moved into a second place tie in Rice history in career rebounds (976), tying Goya Qualls (1979-82). 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.
• Texas Southern is the second of six scheduled opponents that advanced to the 2013 NCAA Tournament and one of 16 that advanced to the postseason. The Lady Tigers are coming off a 2012-13 SWAC regular season title, before falling to Prairie View A&M in the tournament championship. The Lady Tigers still advanced to the NCAA Tournament where they lost to Kansas State, 72-44.
Rice vs. Texas Southern
The Owls are 8-6 all-time against Texas Southern. The last time the two teams met was the 1997-98 season when the Owls dismantled the Lady Tigers, 115-35. All eight of the Owls’ wins in the series have come consecutive, having last lost to Texas Southern 82-67 during the 1981-82 campaign.
Hayes-Perry Returns To Rice
Texas Southern first-year head coach Johnetta Hayes-Perry returns to her old stomping grounds on Monday. Hayes-Perry was a prolific defensive player and four-year letterwinner for the Owls and was a 2003 first-team All-Wac selection. Hayes-Perry ranks third in Rice history with 142 career blocks.
Owls In Home Openers
Rice is 31-4 in home openers, dating back to 1978-79, the first year of data.
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.
Putting Points On The Board
The 77 points by the Owls surpassed the Owls 2012-13 season-high 76 points and was tied for the most points by an Owls teams since they scored 77 points in a 77-50 win at Chicago State on Nov.18, 2011.
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).
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.