Bobbie Modica
Men's Basketball

Second half fuels Owls past Roadrunners in Houston

HOUSTON – Travis Evee poured in 36 points to fuel a Rice second-half, comeback 95-86 win over UTSA men's basketball, in the league opener for both teams, on Friday afternoon at Tudor Fieldhouse. 
UTSA (4-4, 0-1 Conference USA) fell victim to the hot-shooting of Rice (7-2, 1-0 C-USA) in the second half as the Owls closed the game on an 8-0 and 13-2 run, outscoring the Roadrunners – who owned a halftime lead – 53-38 in the second half. 
Wallace, a native of Richardson, Texas, moved into 16th on the all-time C-USA scoring list, after going for 21 points, eight rebounds and five assists. UTSA also got 15 points from Houston native Cedrick Alley Jr., and 17 points and three rebounds from Jacob Germany. 
Jackson, who averaged a C-USA record 26.8 points per game last year, had two points and half but finished with 18 points and four rebounds.
UTSA shot 49 percent in the loss, while Rice shot 56 percent, including 35 of 63 from the field and 14 of 33 from distance. 
The Owls were led by Evee, who was 13 of 19 from the field and 8 of 13 from distance. Quincy Olivari chipped in 21 points with seven rebounds. 
The two-game stretch at Rice will conclude on Saturday at 2 p.m. in a game broadcast live on ESPN+ and Ticket 760 AM. 
The Roadrunners opened the scoring with a Germany post move and a Wallace 17 foot jumper. Rice answered to even the game before UTSA scored six of the next eight points, including a paint basket from Eric Parrish, a Germany post-move and a midrange jumper from Cedrick Alley Jr. 
Rice took its first lead at 11-10 before Wallace sank a step-back 3-pointer for a 13-11 lead. Erik Czumbel added a tough layup to give UTSA a 15-14 lead before Wallace drilled a second 3-pointer. 
Out of the break, Luka Barisic found some space on the wing for his first 3-pointer and a five-point lead and after a Rice 3-pointer, Lachlan Bofinger laid in a basket in the paint for a 23-19 lead. Rice evened up the game at 23 before Jordan Ivy-Curry's floater changed the lead and Alley Jr. cleaned up the offensive glass for a 27-23 lead. 
After the Owls evened the game at 27, Alley sank a corner 3-pointer to take the lead to 30-27 with 7:12 left in the first. Rice took a 35-30 lead, its largest lead of the first half after an 8-0 run, including a third 3-pointer from Evee. 
Alley sank a pair of free throws to cut the lead to three before a Jhivvan Jackson got on the board with a runner with 5:11 left in the first. After allowing a 3-pointer from Cavit Ege Havasa, Wallace sank a step-back 3-pointer and Alley connected on a corner trey for a 40-38 lead. 
Wallace sank a pair of step-back 3-pointers and Germany finished a bucket in the paint after a Wallace find as the Roadrunners took a 48-42 lead into the break. UTSA shot 54 percent in the first half, with Rice shooting 16 of 31. Wallace led all scorers with 17 points on 6 of 6 shooting in the first half. 
Alley sank a win 3-pointer to give the Roadrunners a 51-45 lead and after an Evee 3-pointer, Germany scored on three straight trips down the floor, and Jackson sank a pair at the line, for a 59-51 lead. Rice ripped off an 8-0 run to even the game at 59 after the first media break of the second half. 
After Jackson sank a 17 foot jumper, Riley Abercrombie drilled a go-ahead 3-pointer to give the Owls their first lead of the final stanza. Rice continued its blistering start to the half, making 10 of its first 14 shots – including six of 10 from distance – to take a 71-68 lead with 11:31 left. 
The Owls run continued to 9-0 after a Chris Mullins and-1, taking the lead to 75-68 with 8:46 left in regulation. 
Jackson cut the lead to 75-71 with a corner triple – his second of the game – with 7:48 left. He added a wing three to cut the lead to one before Rice took the lead to 78-74. 
Germany then went on a 5-0 run with a pair of run outs, including an and-1, for a 79-78 lead. The teams traded leads, including Jackson and Evee swapping deep threes, and Rice took the lead to 87-84 after a Quincy Olivari jumper with just under three minutes left. 
UTSA cut the lead to 87-86 after a Parrish run out with 100 seconds left but Rice got a Max Fieldler bucket in the paint for a 3-point lead. Jackson missed on a 30-footer to tie the game with 70 seconds in regulation and Rice pulled away for the win.
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