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Remember that Rice basketball team from last year? The one that went 23-12, made the College Basketball Invitational and had hopes of competing for the conference title in the near future? The one that made the “Rice Rising” mantra head coach Mike Rhoades had preached for years finally feel real?
Last year’s Rice volleyball season ended in heartbreak in the conference tournament. The Owls lost in five sets to Western Kentucky University, nearly pulling off an improbable run the conference championship as the No. 6 seed. This year, the No. 3 seeded Owls are looking to redeem themselves. They open the Conference USA tournament on Friday against the University of Southern Mississippi in Bowling Green, Kentucky. According to head coach Genny Volpe, the team is prepared for a battle.
The University of Southern Mississippi led 10-0 in the first quarter of Rice football’s homecoming game. Then chaos ensued. The Rice and Southern Miss offenses combined to score on the next 11 possessions before a Rice turnover on downs effectively ended the game in the fourth quarter. The Golden Eagles came away from the shootout victorious with a 43-34 win to drop Rice to 1-9 on the season and 1-5 in Conference USA play.
Rice soccer’s historic season came to an end Friday night with a 3-2 loss to Baylor University in the first round of the NCAA tournament. The Owls finish the season 12-4-2 with a regular season conference championship and the fourth-ever NCAA tournament appearance in program history. Some notes from the season-ending loss:
Rice soccer spent the weekend waiting and hoping after its 1-0 loss to the University of North Carolina, Charlotte in the opening round of the Conference USA tournament. The loss meant the Owls would not receive an automatic bid to the NCAA tournament; they would need an at-large berth for the first time since 2004 to qualify.
For three straight years, Rice swimming has finished second in the Conference USA Championship. For three straight years, Florida International University has finished first. It wasn’t the conference championship meet, but on Friday, the Owls exacted some revenge on FIU, defeating the Panthers 136.5-84.5 in a dual meet in New Orleans, Louisiana. According to senior Kaitlyn Swinney, it was a signature win for Rice.
Editor’s note: This story is set on the day of Game 6 of the World Series. All use of present tense refers to Oct. 31.
For those who read more than just the sports section of the Thresher, you should know about Rice’s Second Vision for the Second Century. The Student Association is collecting 100 ideas for the V2C2 through various events around campus. But I’m going to share my idea for Rice’s second century in a different way – right here.
The comment section on the Thresher Facebook page for Madison Buzzard’s opinion piece titled “Rice football must build a winning culture” was something to behold. It all began when Stephanie Marten-Ellis commented, “I feel like this is only an issue because we’re in Texas. Does [the Massachusetts Institute of Technology] even have a football team? [Editor’s note: It does.] Who cares.”
Summer may be over, but the Owls are just getting started in the pool. Rice swimming opened the season Saturday by defeating the University of the Incarnate Word and the University of Houston 370.5-to-208.5-to-83 in the Fall Splash Invitational. The Owls won 15 of the day’s 16 events against UIW and UH, though UH departed after the eight morning events.
The Student Association voted last week to create a 10-member standing committee that will enumerate 100 or more ideas for Rice’s Second Vision for the Second Century. The original Vision for the Second Century motivated Rice to construct McMurtry and Duncan Colleges, expand the international student population and fund more research on campus. V2C2 may incite changes of similar magnitude, and so while we’re pleased that students are being consulted in this vision for the next 100 years at Rice, the current plan for obtaining student input is remarkably problematic. Because of the structure of the committee and the process through which ideas will be chosen, the student body as a whole will have limited influence on V2C2.
I truly thought there was a chance.
It’s been four years since the Rice football team played against the University of Houston. This weekend, the wait will finally be over. The Owls will take on the Cougars Saturday at UH’s TDECU Stadium in the battle for the Bayou Bucket. Head coach David Bailiff said it’s about time the rivalry returned.
Being a student-athlete requires hours of work each day. Double majoring at Rice is hardly easy either. McKay Kyle does both. And in just two years at Rice, the junior volleyball player and economics and sport management double major has already appeared on the Conference USA All-Freshman Team, the C-USA All-Tournament Team and the C-USA Commissioner’s Honor Roll. To Kyle, though, she’s not doing anything too special.
Rice soccer’s offense picked up where it left off in last week’s 4-1 win, scoring six goals over a span of two games this weekend to split its road contests. The Owls fell to No. 18 University of Memphis with a 3-1 loss before rebounding with a 5-2 thrashing of the University of Tulsa on Sunday. Rice now heads into the conference season with a record of 3-2-1.
When the volleyball team left for its season opener in Dallas, the plan was to be gone for a weekend. Then, the hurricane struck. The Owls finally returned on Sunday after traveling through three cities, playing seven matches and winning four times.
In the wake of Hurricane Harvey, Rice student-athletes have done their part to help the city recover. Teams including swimming and men’s basketball have organized fundraisers and volunteered at shelters to help those affected by the storm.
In the 57th minute of the game, senior midfielder Nia Stallings had zero goals this season. Eight minutes later, she had three. Stallings’ second-half hat trick broke a 1-1 tie and led Rice soccer to a 4-1 win over crosstown rival University of Houston. The Owls are now 2-1-1 on the season.
With Hurricane Harvey bearing down on Houston, Rice sports are on hold. The football and volleyball teams have been on the road for the duration of the storm, and the soccer team has had a match canceled due to the weather. Here is a roundup of the ways each team is dealing with the effects of Hurricane Harvey.