March 4, 2010
Rice Game Notes l UCF Game Notes
Rice wraps up the regular season and looks to grab momentum heading to next week's Conference USA Tournament in Tulsa, Okla., when the Owls play host to UCF Saturday afternoon at Tudor Fieldhouse. Tip-off for Saturday's game is 2 p.m. and the contest can be heard in Houston on ESPN 97.5 as well as world wide via Riceowls.com.
Rice is 8-21 and 1-14 in Conference USA play. The Owls have lost their last six. UCF, 13-16 and 5-10, travel to Houston having lost its last four contests including a 121-115, triple-overtime loss at Marshall last week.
Saturday's game is Senior Day at Rice as the Owls will recognize three prior to tip-off - senior student manager Gaelyn Rose Sicher-Ford as well as senior student-athletes Cory Pflieger and Lawrence Ghoram.
Sicher-Ford is in her third year as a member of the basketball staff and her responsibilities have increased over her tenure to include overseeing the student-manager program as well as responsibilities with team travel.
Pflieger has missed the year after surgery to repair a torn anterior cruciate ligament which has kept him out of the lineup this season. He ranks 10th all-time at Rice in three-pointers made with 130. Pflieger has scored 574 career points and averaged 8.2 points per game last year.
Ghoram will play his 119th career game Saturday which ranks fifth in Rice history. He has scored 799 points and grabbed 356 rebounds during his career.
Ghoram is averaging 8.1 points and 3.7 rebounds as a senior.
In Wednesday's 78-70 loss to Houston, the Owls had 50 rebounds as a team and the squad had two players post double-doubles for the first time since February, 2006.
Junior forward Suleiman Braimoh recorded new career highs with 14 points and 13 rebounds. Despite foul trouble which limited him to 21 minutes of playing time, Arsalan Kazemi scored 11 points and grabbed 12 rebounds.
Kazemi is averaging 10.5 points and a team-leading 9.0 rebounds for the season. Rookie guard Tamir Jackson is averaging 11 points per game.
During the first week of the conference season, UCF's Keith Clanton scored 17 points and A.J. Rompza added 13 as the Knights defeated the Owls 77-58.
Rompza had five of the Knights' nine steals in the earlier meeting against Rice and ranks second in the league, averaging 2.7 steals per game. His ranked among the Top 10 in C-USA assists, averaging 4.5 per game.
UCF junior forward A.J. Tyler is the only player to start every game for the Knights this season and is averaging 10.4 points and 5.0 rebounds.
Following Saturday's game, Rice will turn its attention to the GMC Sierra Conference USA Tournament which will be played March 10-13 at the BOK Center in Tulsa. Rice will be the No. 12 seed, and while an opponent has not been determined, the Owls will play the No. 5 seed Wednesday at 6 p.m. The winner of that first-round game will take on the No. 4 seed at 6:30 p.m. Thursday in the quarterfinals.