Jan. 15, 2014
HOUSTON - Jessica Kuster scored 21 points and grabbed 15 rebounds and Rice shot 54 percent from the field to down Louisiana Tech 82-68 before 426 fans at Tudor Fieldhouse Wednesday night.
Tech (5-11, 0-3 C-USA) came out of the gates fast. Junior Chrisstasia scored the first five points and when junior Whitney Frazier scored off the glass with 16:55 to play in the opening half, the Lady Techsters led 9-4. The lead was short-lived as the Owls used a 17-2 run to erase the deficit as the Owls built a 39-23 halftime lead.
"We gave up a lot of open shots," said Tech head coach Teresa Weatherspoon. "We got off to a good start and had a lot of energy. We started the game well. But then they made some shots and went on a run and our energy level wasn't the same. Basketball is a game of runs. We have to take pride in stopping those runs."
The Owls (9-7, 2-1 C-USA) pushed the lead out to as many as 21 at 59-38 midway through the second half before the Lady Techsters (5-11, 0-3 C-USA) turned up the defensive pressure.
Tech forced turnovers on four straight possessions in the backcourt as the Lady Techsters cut the deficit to 59-48 with just over eight minutes to play. However, Rice called a timeout and then used a mini 8-2 run to push the advantage back out to 67-50. Tech would get no closer than 14 the rest of the way.
After shooting 48 percent (16-33) from the field in the first half, Rice heated up even more in the second half, hitting 62 percent (16-26). Tech shot 32 percent (21-66) from the field in the game, although the Lady Techsters connected on 23-of-29 free throws.
Rice outrebounded Tech 39-38 as the Lady Techsters pulled down 21 offensive rebounds in the loss. Tech forced18 turnovers while committing 15 - only four of those coming in the second half.
Frazier led Tech with 21 points and 10 rebounds as she registered her seventh double double of the season. Walter and Lulu Perry each added 16 points while Kanedria Andrews pulled down eight rebounds.