Similar Teams Go At It In Houston
North Texas Travels To Rice
Feb. 3, 2017
HOUSTON -- The North Texas women's basketball team ends its three-game road trip Saturday with a 2 p.m. tipoff at Rice.
With nine games remaining, the Mean Green (6-14, 3-6 C-USA) and Owls (12-8, 3-6 C-USA) are in a four-way tie in the Conference USA standings and could move up two spots with a win Saturday. The game will feature two teams that share a lot outside of the current standings. The game will be aired live on KNTU 88.1 FM and live streamed on CUSA.tv.
The last three game between North Texas and Rice have all come down to the wire and it should be expected. Both teams are averaging around 59 points per game in conference and both are two of the best defensive teams in conference. Being able to sustain the intensity the longest has proven to be difference.
In their most recent meeting, the Owls came from 14 points down late in the third quarter to beat the Mean Green by two points on Jan. 14. Last season, they played a double and a triple overtime game with Rice winning both.
Since the teams' most recent meeting, North Texas has seen a steady increase in scoring from Terriell Bradley, Candice Adams and Terra Ellison. The trio is averaging 64 percent of the team's points per game this season.
Ellison has stepped up her rebounding average this season as well. The senior has 121 rebounds on the year, which is a career-best for her. Furthermore, Ellison has made 14 consecutive free throws. The program record is 17.
Also closing in on program records is Adams. The senior has made 88 3-pointer since the start of last season, only 13 away from the North Texas record for most 3-pointers made in consecutive seasons. Adams' 138 career made 3-pointers is already fourth most in program history.
As for Bradley, the sophomore Kansas transfer leads the team with an average of 13.1 points per game. Since 2005, no North Texas women's basketball player has a higher scoring average than Bradley.
The last time Rice and North Texas played, as expected, Bradley, Adams and Ellison were the top three scorers for the Mean Green. However, they only combined to score 34 points -- 3.5 below their combined average.
Defensively, for three quarters against Rice on Jan. 14 North Texas was the strongest it's been all year. For exactly nine minutes, towards the end of the second quarter until the near end of the third quarter, the Mean Green held Rice scoreless. Immediately ending that run was a 14-0 run by Rice that propelled them to win the game.
Executing the game plan and keeping its defensive intensity for all 40 minutes of the game has been a message head coach Jalie Mitchell has preached all year long.