Southern Miss Downed 62-56 at Rice
HOUSTON, Texas. – The Southern Miss women’s basketball team (12-9, 4-4) was downed 62-56 by Rice (17-3, 7-1) Thursday evening. The Lady Eagles, playing without starting point guard Shonte Hailes, were led by Jayla King on the offensive side of the court with 27 points and the defensive side with eight rebounds.
Southern Miss rallied twice, once in the third quarter and then again in the fourth, thanks to defensive stands that held the Owls scoreless for over five minutes. At the start of the Lady Eagles’ fourth quarter final stand Rice led by as many as 16.
“We played extremely hard,” said Head Coach Joye Lee-McNelis. “We made defensive stop after defensive stop, but we could not get a bucket to close the gap. I can’t stay enough of how proud I am. We’re playing with a freshman, Allie Kennedy, and someone who has never played point guard, Alarie Mayze, at the point. Our defensive effort, the intensity, kept us in the game and kept us fighting. To come to Rice, with their record, and without Shonte Hailes and play the way we did? You can’t walk out of this building disappoint.”
Alarie Mayze filled in at point in Hailes absence and she contributed 10 points, six rebounds, 2 assists and three steals as the primary ball handler. Leaphart, getting the seventh starting nod of her career, filled in at center due to King and Megan Brown sliding down a position.
Tonight’s contest was the forty-ninth game that King has tallied at least 10 points and the fourth 20 point game of her career. King’s point total at the end of the night was her second highest on the season and the most since her 30 point burst against Alcorn State earlier this year.
The Lady Eagles will be at home this Sunday, Feb. 4 to host Marshall at 2 p.m. One lucky fan in attendance will go home with a portable grill, official Super Bowl LII merchandise, chips, dip, and much more.
Fans can watch each game on CUSA.TV or listen to Josh West on the broadcast via The Score 1400 AM or the Southern Miss Game Day App starting 30 minutes before tipoff.