HOUSTON (AP) — Chennedy Carter scored 29 points and Ciera Johnson made a layup with 9 seconds left to give No. 5 Texas A&M a 62-61 victory over Rice on Sunday.
Carter, the preseason Southeastern Conference player of the year, was 11 of 27 from the field, including 4 of 8 on 3-pointers. She scored 17 points in the first quarter, outscoring the Owls by herself, as Texas A&M built a 24-14 lead.
Kayla Wells added 19 points for Texas A&M (3-0), which shot 39 percent from the field. The Aggies forced Rice into 19 turnovers, which turned into 19 points.
After Rice had regained a one-point lead, Shambria Washington missed a corner 3-pointer, but Johnson grabbed the rebound and put it in for the lead. Sydne Wiggins last second 3-pointer missed.
Lauren Schwartz had 19 points, and Wiggins added 13 points for Rice (2-2), which shot 38 percent from the field. Scoring leader Erica Ogwumike was in foul trouble and had nine points and 12 rebounds.
Texas A&M: For a second straight game, the Aggies were tested, but this time it was for a full four quarters. Texas A&M held a 34-18 advantage in points in the paint, but had difficulty finding scoring from anyone other than Carter and Wells as the rest of the team shot 6 of 22 from the field.
Rice: The Owls, which received votes in the latest rankings, outscored the Aggies, 24-13, in the third but couldn’t keep that momentum into the fourth as they scored eight points on 3 of 15 shooting. Rice, the preseason favorite to repeat as Conference USA champions, has not beat a Top 25 team since Dec. 1, 2006, when they defeated Texas A&M.
Texas A&M should maintain its ranking.
Texas A&M: At Southern California on Saturday.
Rice: At Oklahoma State on Saturday.