Jan. 2, 2010
Rice v TCU Game Book
FORT WORTH - TCU's Kevin Butler and Nikola Cerina combined to go 14-of-16 from the field and the Horned Frogs shot 52 percent as a team in a 70-58 win over Rice Saturday in Daniel-Meyer Coliseum.
Butler connected on 8-of-9 shots en route to a game-high 18 points. Cerina was 6-for-7, missing his last shot in the final minute, but finishing with 15 points.
The Horned Frogs shot a blistering shooting percentage to begin the game.
TCU knocked down nine of its first 11 shots in building a 22-9 lead through the game's first eight minutes. Edvinas Ruzgas' pullup triple on a fastbreak followed by Greg Hill's layin after a Rice missed shot capped a 17-4 Horned Frog run.
Rice would get no closer than six points in the opening half as A.J. Holland and Lucas Kuipers knocked down back-to-back three-pointers to cut the Frogs' advantage to 25-19. But TCU would extend its lead back out to as many as 12 points. Trey Stanton's three-pointer with 2:12 left in the half would be the final points of the period by either team as the Owls trailed 37-28 at the break.
After intermission, TCU scored the second period's first eight points to extend the lead to 45-28. The Owls, who shot 39 percent for the game, did not make a field goal attempt until Kuipers' three-pointer with 14:11 to play cut the advantage to 49-35.
The Owls could never whittle the lead down to single figures in the second half.
Rice freshman Arsalan Kazemi was the lone Owl to score in double figures, finishing with 14 points. He was 4-for-5 from the field and made 6-of-7 free throws.
The Owls, now 6-7, open Conference USA play Wednesday when they play host to Houston. Tip-off for Wednesday's game is set for 8 p.m. and will be broadcast by CSS. Houston plays at Iowa State Sunday before taking on Rice.
TCU, 7-7, plays host to Air Force Wednesday in its Mountain West Conference opener.