Senior Becky Wade is apparently incapable of running in a track or cross-country meet without setting a personal or school record.
The women's tennis team's season could not have gotten off to a better start after three straight 7-0 victories, and its momentum continued with wins this week against McNeese State University and its first ranked win of the season with an upset over Louisiana State University.
After three straight conference wins, things looked good for the Owls. They had some momentum, won some road games and were in the top few spots in the conference. Then they traveled to West Virginia, where it felt like everything came apart.
If you are going to be a good team, you have to beat the bad teams. That's exactly what the women's basketball team did when it took the floor this past week against two of the worst teams in C-USA, hoping to propel itself above .500 for the season.
When Head Coach Jon Warren thought he might have his group of stalwart contributors lined up for the indoor track season, a few new athletes jumped in after the gun went off on the 2012 indoor season. Freshman Will Firth and junior Sam McGuffie, also a running back on the football team, both placed first among Owls in the mile run and 60-meter hurdles, respectively.
After hours of practice and competition, the women's swim team has only the Conference USA Championship meet to look forward to as the Owls finished their regular season this past weekend in a quad meet against University of Houston, Louisiana State University and Tulane University. The meet lasted from Jan. 27-28, and featured strong efforts from all members of the team. As the meet was over two days at the University of Houston Recreation Center Natatorium, each of four teams competed in three dual meets simultaneously. On the first day, the Rice foursome of sophomore Michelle Gean, sophomore Lilly Marrow, freshman Casey Clark and sophomore Chelsea Fong took second in the 200-yard medley relay to pace the Owl swimmers. While Rice has finished faster this year in the 200-yard medley than its 1:46.42 on Friday, the three-sophomore/one freshman crew held off the challenge from six other entries. In the 1,000 meter race, freshman Erin Flanigan finished in second place with a time of 10:20.32. Rice junior Danielle Spence came in fourth in the event with a 10:31.34 time, while senior Nicole Delaloye posted a season-best 10:32.42 for fifth. Flanigan came back later and notched Rice's best finish in the 200-free with a 1:56.43 for ninth place. Also notable was Fong, who, although she was not entered in Friday's 200-freestyle, had a steady third-place finish in the 100-yard butterfly (56.67). In addition, senior sprinter Shelby Bottoms had not raced in the 200-breaststroke previously in her Rice career, but her 2:20.95 for fourth place was the Owls' second-fastest time of the season.
Basketball in its simplest form is a game of runs, and the men's basketball team found itself mired in a brutal one as it returned home from Memphis last Wednesday night after a drubbing at the hands of the University of Memphis (15-7, 6-2 C-USA).
The three doubles matches may only account for one of the seven total points in a collegiate tennis match, but that does not mean that these matches are insignificant. Since the doubles point is first, it is always important to get out to a 1-0 lead, as it gives a team a major advantage and confidence heading into singles play.
Perfection, unlike success, is an easy concept for any sports team to measure. The feat of going 7-0 in a collegiate tennis match is every squad's paradigm of flawless play. This past weekend, the women's tennis team achieved a 7-0 victory twice, first against Lamar University (0-2) on Friday and then over the University of Louisiana at Lafayette (0-1).
Another week, another split for the Owls' women's basketball team – which is now 0-3 on the road inside Conference USA this season. While things could be worse – they have been able to win pretty reliably at home – the team is failing to live up to its billing as one of the best teams inside C-USA, since it is having difficulty leaving the pack in the middle of the standings.
After a dominant start to their season last weekend against Lamar University (0-1) and Prairie View A&M University (0-1), the Owls were excited about hosting two perennial powerhouses in the University of Texas (2-0) and Louisiana State University (1-0). Rice saw a chance to shine and make a statement to the rest of the nation that it was for real.
If the pain of last Wednesday's buzzer-beating overtime loss to the University of Alabama at Birmingham after blowing a 17-point lead wasn't enough for the Rice men's basketball team, the injury to leading scorer and rebounder Arsalan Kazemi in the game's final minutes all but assured that the aftermath wouldn't be any prettier.
From the season's opening, men's basketball Head Coach Ben Braun has preached a simple message to his team.
After finishing the first week of the new semester, the Owls headed out to Austin last Friday to take part in the USA Swimming Grand Prix Tournament. A total of five Owls competed in the events. The action began on Friday, when freshman and Austin native Erin Flanigan finished 27th out of a field of 39 entrants in the 400-meter freestyle. Her long-course time of 4:23.28 is equivalent to 4:52.77 in short-course yards. Also, Flanigan was one of two Rice swimmers in the meet's 100-meter butterfly. She was 41st in the prelims with a 1:04.50 (converts to 56.57 in short-course yards), while fellow freshman Casey Clark swam a 1:03.98 (56.11 SCY). Clark was also 51st out of 186 swimmers in the 100-meter freestyle after finishing with a time of 59.31 (a season-best 51.84 in SCY).
With the women's track team back in action and looking to reclaim its spot as one of the top teams in Conference USA, Head Coach Jim Bevan's team turned to its strength in the distance events to guide it to a strong finish in the Leonard Hilton Invitational held last Friday at the University of Houston.
After a rough 14-10 record last season with which the team could not secure a berth to the NCAA tournament, the women's tennis team was hoping for a fresh start with a trip to the University of Central Florida Invitational to commence the season. Along with Rice and UCF, Texas Tech University was also a part of the three-day invitational.
For years, sports fans have tried to explain why it's so much easier to win at home. The rims are still as high and the free-throw line is just as far as away, but there is just something about playing in your home gym that makes it easier to score points.
Houston made history last Saturday morning when, for the first time ever, the U.S. Olympic Trials Marathon races for both men and women were held on the same course, on the same day. For the competitors, the road to the London 2012 Olympic Games began in front of the George R. Brown Convention Center on the Avenida de las Americas. In just a few short hours, the course outlined throughout the Space City determined which three men and women would represent Team USA on the biggest athletics stage in the world.