Rice (1-3) vs. Drake (1-2)
The Sports Network
DATE & TIME: Friday, November 23, 9:30 p.m. (et)
FACTS & STATS: Site: Anaheim Convention Center Arena (9,000) -- Anaheim,
California. Television: ESPN U. Home Record: Rice 1-1, Drake 1-0. Away Record:
Rice 0-1, Drake 0-1. Neutral Record: Rice 0-1, Drake 0-1. Conference Record:
Rice 0-0, Drake 0-0. Series Record: Drake leads, 3-2.
GAME NOTES: The Drake Bulldogs and Rice Owls both hope to salvage their trip
to the DirectTV Classic when they meet in a consolation ladder matchup at the
Anaheim Convention Center Arena.
The winner of this contest will advance to play either Xavier or Drexel. Both
losers will also be matched up.
The Owls were completely shut down by Georgia Tech in their first-round game
as they suffered a 54-36 setback to the Yellow Jackets. The 33 points scored
by Rice were the lowest since Feb. 14, 2000. The team managed to make only 11-
of-48 field goal attempts, while Georgia Tech went 21-of-54. The Owls are now
1-3 with their only win coming over Division II foe St. Edwards. They were
also defeated by Division II opponent (St. Thomas-TX) in their season opener,
and suffered a 77-63 loss to Temple in Philadelphia.
The Bulldogs dropped to 1-2 after relinquishing a nine-point lead late in the
second half before losing, 70-67, to California. Drake initially trailed on
the scoreboard and overcame a 23-13 deficit, but it could not stop the Golden
Bears' guard combo of Justin Cobbs (21 points) and Allen Crabbe (15 points).
Coach Mark Phelps was not happy his squad was beat on the glass 40-26 or that
it converted only 15-of-26 attempts at the charity stripe. The loss was the
second in a row for Drake as it fell to the Detroit Titans on Nov. 17 in its
This bout marks the sixth meeting between these two schools on the basketball
court. Drake owns a slim 3-2 edge in the series, but the Owls won just last
spring when they squared off in the CollegeInsider.com Tournament.
In Rice's low-scoring loss on Thursday, Austin Ramljak came off the bench to
make 6-of-12 three-point attempts for a career-high 18 points. While Ramljak
accounted for half of the team's scoring output, Tamir Jackson scored nine
points, Keith Washington netted six points, and Seth Gearhart tallied two.
Julian DeBose, Max Guercy, Ross Wilson and Dan Peera combined to attempt 13
field goals, but not one of them dropped. The poor offensive production is
nothing new, as St. Thomas-TX held the Owls to 59 points and Temple limited
them to 63 prior to the tourney.
Aside from its poor free throw shooting, Drake played very well at the
offensive end of the floor versus the Golden Bears. It shot 45.3 percent from
the floor and had 16 assists against only 10 turnovers. The Bulldogs also
knocked down 4-of-8 shots from beyond the arc over the final 20 minutes. The
scoring came through a balanced attack as Ben Simons, Seth VanDeest, Richard
Carter and Gary Ricks all contributed 13 points. Jordan Clarke also got into
the mix with 11 points and a team-high 10 boards. Simons entered the game as
the team's leading scorer with 16.3 ppg.
Rice will endure a very long season if none of its players emerge as a
legitimate scoring threat. The Bulldogs have played two teams that are very
capable of reaching this year's NCAA Tournament down to the wire. Drake will
have no problem keeping the offensively-challenged Owls at bay.
Sports Network Predicted Outcome: Drake 71, Rice 59
11/23 10:37:29 ET
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