Sept. 18, 2012
HOUSTON- Rice defeated its cross-town rivals Houston 3-0 to open C-USA play at Tudor Fieldhouse. Rice held Houston to -.036 hitting, the first time held an opponent to under .000 hitting since Aug. 26, 2005 against Louisiana-Lafayette.
"We played our game tonight," said Rice head coach Genny Volpe. "Our game plan was to focus on our side of the net and make plays. We executed our defense and took Houston out of rhythm."
"I'm proud of how focused we are at this point and we need to maintain this focus for the weekend," added Volpe.
Rice (8-7, 1-0 C-USA) hit .277 during the match, while holding Houston (1-10, 0-1 C-USA) to a -.036 mark. Houston did not break even in hitting in any set.
Daniela Arenas set a career-high with 22 digs, posting her third straight 20+ dig effort. Prior to this three-game stretch, her career-high was 19 digs.
Megan Murphy added in 35 assists and 12 digs to post her third straight double-double. Murphy is the three-time reigning C-USA Setter of the Week. Murphy needs 37 more assists to reach 2,000 for her career.
Noelle Whitlock also reached double digits in digs with 12.
Jillian Humphrey hit .667 (8K-0E-12TA) while adding in eight kills.
The Owls dominated the Cougars in the first set, winning 25-9 largely due to an 11-1 run to start the set, in which Houston did not have a kill. McNamara posted five kills in the first set; the entire Houston squad had five kills in that same set.
Rice won the second set 25-12, by hitting .324, while keeping the Cougars to a -.030 clip. Jenkins posted five kills in the second set.
The Owls took the third set 25-16, using five kills by Cole to take the set.
Rice plays at Memphis on Sept. 21 at 7 p.m., the first leg of a two-game C-USA road trip. Tudor Fieldhouse opens its doors again on Sept. 28 as longtime rival SMU visits for a 7 p.m. match.
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