Southwestern succumbs to Rice, humidity, Houston

MAR 24, 2001 - The Bucs travelled down to Rice the first weekend back from Spring Break with hopes of stealing a victory and ensuring a winning season. Because of injuries and other commitments, SU was only able to field 14 players for the game against a beefed up bench from Rice which boasted a roster twice the size of Southwestern.

Both our leading scorer and captain of the team, and star goalie were unable to make the trip because of previous commitments. One thing SU did have on its side, as it always does when traveling to Houston, is a large fan base. For the second time in as many trips, the fans for Southwestern far outnumbered those of the home team. Thanks to all who came out and supported the guys in a hard fought game.

Southwestern, trying to find a way to deal with depleted numbers and the wear and tear the humidity was having on their ability to play, held strong with Rice through most of the first half. By the end of one, Southwestern was down by one on a three goal frenzy by Senior Kai Stratman.

Mark Jurica, stepped in in Grasty's absence to do an exceptional job in goal and held his own throughout the entire game. Mark was co-rookie of the year last year after being introduced to the sport in the Fall of his freshman year. Mark literally had two practices before the Rice game, his first ever in goal.

By the end of the first half, Rice jumped out to a 9-4 lead, all SU goals scored by Kai. The second half showed our main weakness, and Rice was able to control the game and take advantage. With only 15 guys to the 30 of Rice, our players simply ran out of gas. Rice was able to capitalize on transition opportunities throughout the entire second half, forcing Jurica to take point blank shots.

Marc Harrison, was able to score two goals in the third quarter to round out SU scoring for the day, but it was to little for a team that lost most of its steam by half-time.

Rice finished the game with several goals despite Jurica's impressive effort to win by a score of 16-6.

Rice simply outplayed the guys in a game which all feel would have been a lot closer if everyone would have been able to play. Many guys deserve credit for hustling to the end. Kent Sholars, filled in admirably at defense for injured David Coleman, and all our middies stepped up there play and fought for ground balls.

The Bucs travelled back in preparation for their last home game of the year against TCU, a team the Seniors have never beat.

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