The Charlotte 49ers (10-10, 4-5 C-USA ) traveled to Houston, Texas to take on the Rice Owls (14-8, C-USA: 4-5) in an 84-67 loss Saturday, Jan. 28th. The 49ers were led by Jon Davis, who put up 25 points along with two assists, while senior Braxton Ogbueze scored 15 points along with six rebounds. On top of this, Ogbueze was able to record his 1,000th career point as a Charlotte 49er. He is the 26th player in school history to do so.
The 49ers saw ten points from their bench, and were able to record 34 points in the paint. Throughout the first two quarters, Charlotte was able to shoot 13-37 (41.9 percent) from the field and 5-13 (38.5 percent) from three-point land.
The Rice owls came out the gate swinging, putting up points on the board quickly, but Charlotte was able to get a stop early on and slow their momentum with a 8-0 run of their own. Things went back and forth between the teams, culminating in a 14-0 streak by Rice that lasted over two minutes.
Despite the 49ers cutting the lead a number of times, the Owls were able to make their presence known and sustain their lead to finish out the half, leading 38-33. Austin Ajukwa was able to finish the half with eight points and five rebounds.
The second half didn’t bring much more prosperity for Charlotte, as the Rice Owls were able to maintain their lead for the rest of the game.
Despite this, Davis rose to the challenge, dropping 14 points off of 4-11 from the field, and sitting at a perfect 6-6 from the free throw line. The 49ers only committed nine turnovers in comparison to Rice’s 18. Charlotte converted 14 points off of those turnovers to close the gap even further, but in the end, Rice stayed consistent.
Four of Charlotte’s starters found themselves in a bit of foul trouble as the second half progressed with Quentin Jackson, Anthony Vanhook, Andrian White and Ajukwa, all finishing with three fouls.
In the end, the scoring duo of Egor Koulechov and Marcus Evans, who both finished with 23, proved too much to handle for the Charlotte defense.
Charlotte had five players finish in double digits tonight, including Vanhook and White who returned after their one-game suspension. The 49ers will take on FAU in Halton arena this Thursday at 7 p.m.