Tulane wide receiver Cary Koch makes the reception in front of Rice defender Andrew Cates during the second quarter. (AP Photo/Pat Sullivan)
Nov. 12, 2005
HOUSTON (AP) - John Wall rushed for 156 yards and three touchdowns as Rice rolled up 392 yards on the ground and ended the nation's longest losing streak at 14 games with a 42-34 victory against Tulane on Saturday.
Wall and backfield mate Quinton Smith each had 20 carries, with Smith pitching in another 143 yards and a touchdown. Wall scored from 25 and 75 yards before a 1-yard plunge, and Smith's 58-yard run provided the last of seven lead changes, putting Rice ahead 35-31 midway through the third quarter.
The Owls (1-8, 1-5 Conference USA) gave themselves a cushion on a 29-yard touchdown pass from Joel Armstrong to tight end Joe Don Wood with 4:45 left in the game.
Tulane (2-7, 1-5), which played in its ninth different stadium, extended its losing streak to six games after starting the season 2-1.
The Green Wave led 31-28 before Smith's score and pulled within 35-34 on a 22-yard field goal by Jacob Hartgroves with 9:06 left in the game.
But Rice's Carl Taylor recovered a fumble by Matt Forte at the Tulane 42-yard line with 6:14 to play. Five plays later, Armstrong threw the scoring pass to Wood.
Rice's Chad Price broke up a fourth-down pass with 1:22 to play, and Taylor intercepted a Scott Elliott pass with five seconds to go for the final stop.
Rice's last win was Oct. 9, 2004, when the Owls beat SMU 44-10 in Houston.
Rice jumped to a 14-3 lead early in the second quarter. The Owls drove 69 yards in eight plays, capped by Wall's 25-yard run, and Armstrong finished a 10-play, 52-yard drive with a 4-yard run on the first play of the second quarter.
Tulane came back with two quick touchdowns in the second quarter, and the teams traded touchdowns after that as Tulane led 24-21 at the half.
The Owls scored on drives of four and three plays on their first two possessions of the second half, the latter capped by Smith's long scoring run.