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For the second year in a row, Arielle Hayon competed at the NCAA Swimming Championship Meet, this time placing No. 39 in the 100 yard butterfly and No. 50 in the 200. But unlike last year, the sophomore from Agoura Hills, California competed in both races battling a sinus infection.
After earning the No. 3 seed and a first round bye, the Rice women’s basketball team’s Conference USA tournament run ended abruptly on Friday when they lost to the No. 6 seed University of Texas at San Antonio 62-54 in the quarterfinals.
Rice women’s basketball head coach Lindsey Edmond’s goal for the Conference USA tournament is simple.
It doesn’t take a basketball analyst to figure out which NBA player junior forward Max Fiedler models his game after, and it just so happens to be the player that the 6’11 forward from Indialantic, Florida has admired his whole life.
If it was only the American Athletic Conference swimming championships, Rice’s would be bringing home a championship trophy. Despite starting 369 points behind first place because they don’t have a diving team, the Owls claimed the most points in the pool and took fourth place overall in the first AAC meet in school history. The Owls tallied 1,136 points, behind first place University of Houston (1,311.5), second place Florida International University (1,300) and third place Southern Methodist University (1208.5). After the meet, head coach Seth Huston was happy with the Owl’s performance.
Last week, the Rice women’s basketball team flew east for a two-game road trip. Their first stop was a visit to the reigning Conference USA champions, the University of North Carolina at Charlotte, where they lost 66-61. For the second leg of their trip, the Owls took on the University of Alabama at Birmingham, where they bounced back from Thursday’s loss with a 67-57 victory over the Blazers. After the trip, head coach Lindsay Edmonds was pleased with how the team was able to bounce back on Saturday after Thursday’s loss.
If you watched any Rice women’s basketball games in the past two years, you’ve seen No. 22 with pink highlights hitting shots and making plays. But if you saw Ashlee Austin as a freshman, you would be shocked to see the transformation that the forward from Johns Creek, Georgia has gone through: from the last seat on the bench to the face of Rice women’s basketball.
Over the weekend, the Rice swim team traveled to Dallas for their first meet of 2023 against three American Athletic Conference foes. Across the two days of competition, the Owls swept the meet, defeating Tulane University 247-68, the University of North Texas 254-93 and Southern Methodist University 171.5-161.5. Following the sweep, head coach Seth Huston was really pleased with how hard the team fought.
The start of the new year did not go according to plan for the Rice women’s basketball as they fell on Thursday to Louisiana Tech University 79-74. In their fourth Conference USA matchup this season, the Owls fell behind early, and their second half comeback fell short, dropping them to 1-3 in conference play. Following the loss, head coach Lindsay Edmonds said she was disappointed with the Owls’ early deficit, which proved too much to overcome.
Late in the first half of Monday night's game against the No. 7 seed University of Texas, it looked like Rice volleyball might not be the only Owls to defeat a top-ranked Texas team. Up 33-23 with under two minutes remaining in the first half, the Rice men’s basketball team looked poised for their first win over a top-10 opponent in 40 years. That dream was for naught, as the Longhorns won a tight overtime battle, 87-81. After the game, head coach Scott Pera said he was disappointed in the outcome but proud of his players and their fight.
Rice volleyball’s season came to a close on Friday, as the No. 5 seed Owls lost a five set thriller to No. 4 seed Baylor University in the second round of the NCAA tournament (25-16, 22-25, 23-25, 25-14, 11-15). The loss ended the Owls tournament run and hopes at their first Sweet Sixteen berth in program history. After the game, head coach Genny Volpe was proud of her team despite the loss.
In the first round of the 2022 NCAA tournament, the No. 5 seed Rice defeated the University of Colorado Boulder in four sets to advance to the second round. After the 3-1 victory, head coach Genny Volpe was thrilled with the team's win against a tough opponent.
For the fifth season in a row, Rice is playing volleyball in December. On Sunday, the No. 20 Owls were announced as a No. 5 seed in the quarter of the bracket hosted by the University of Louisville when the NCAA Division I Women’s Volleyball committee announced the NCAA tournament field. The Owls will start off tournament play in the Waco regional against the University of Colorado on Dec. 1. After receiving their bid, head coach Genny Volpe said that the team is excited and ready to compete.
Rice volleyball took care of business in the first round of the Conference USA tournament, sweeping the No.7 seed Florida International University (26-24, 25-22, 25-18). With the win, the No. 2 seed Owls advanced to the semifinals where they will face University of Texas at El-Paso. After the win, head coach Genny Volpe was happy with the sweep and moving on to the semifinals.
Even though they’ve won 48 of their last 50 conference regular season games, the Rice volleyball team has not won a Conference USA tournament since 2018. After three straight years as the conference’s runners-up, the Owls will finally look to reverse their fortunes in what will be their final postseason in C-USA. This year, the No. 22 Owls enter the tournament with an almost perfect conference record of 13-1, and 23-3 overall. According to head coach Genny Volpe, the team is excited to jump into postseason volleyball.
The Rice swim team had a lot to celebrate on Senior Day as they waved goodbye to the Tulane University Green Wave after Friday’s dual meet. In route to their 87 point victory (144-57), the first Rice victory in the American Athletic Conference as the swim team moved a year earlier than other sports, the Owls claimed gold in all 11 events and senior backstroker Zoe Spitz was able to put a bow on top of the day with a new school record. After the meet, head coach Seth Huston said he was pleased with the performance.
In the true spirit of Halloween, Rice Stadium resembled a haunted house with proverbial carnage all over the field following Saturday’s loss. Going into the game as 15 point favorites against the last-place team in Conference USA, who had fired their head coach six days prior, all indications pointed to the Owls celebrating Homecoming with a resounding win. But not only did the University of North Carolina at Charlotte spoil the Homecoming festivities, they did so with a 33 point victory, defeating the Owls 56-23. Head coach Mike Bloomgren was very disappointed with the loss after the game.
Junior defender Jaden Roberts picked the perfect time for her first career goal. With 10 seconds on the clock and the Owls’ Senior Night game tied at zero, graduate forward Grace Collins lined up for a corner kick and sent it into a sea of Owls and Western Kentucky University Hilltoppers. The ball bounced to Roberts, whose shot found the back of the net, sending the Owls into celebration as the clock hit zero. After the game, Roberts recounted the dream goal.
When the Owls dropped the first two sets against No. 18 Baylor University on Wednesday, it felt like the same position they had found themselves in numerous times in a season that’s already featured five comeback wins. But instead of the Owls pulling off their third reverse-sweep of the year, the Bears won set three to clinch the sweep (18-25, 22-25, 17-25). Entering the match ranked No. 22 in the American Volleyball Coaches Association poll and No. 10 in the Rating Percentage Index, the loss ended the Owls’ 11 game win streak. Following the match, head coach Genny Volpe was disappointed by the Owls’ inability to match Baylor’s efficiency.
The middle blocker position is known for what its name implies: blocking the middle. Middle blockers are usually the first line of defense, quickly reading and blocking up the opposing team’s attacks. But Anota Adekunle, a fifth-year senior from Humble, Texas, transcends the typical middle blocker role by adding a strong offensive presence in addition to her defense. When asked about the position she’s played since middle school, Adekunle said that the middle blockers’ role is usually to act as a distraction on offense.