Rice baseball wins 18th consecutive conference championship

Owls head into C-USA Championship Tournament as No. 1 seed

The Rice Owls baseball team completed a three-game sweep by beating Marshall 6-0 on the last day of league play and extended its streak of winning league championships to 18 straight years, dating back to 1996.

Photo by Tommy LaVergne

The Owls’ 18 consecutive conference championships (including regular season and/or tournament titles) date back to its membership in three different leagues. The 2013 C-USA title, which the Owls share with co-champion Southern Miss, is Rice’s eighth straight since joining the conference for baseball in 2006. The Owls have won or shared seven C-USA regular season titles overall and have won the league tournament four times, including the one year the team did not win the regular season crown in 2009.

Rice improved its record to 37-17 overall. The Owls and Southern Miss both finished with 15-9 C-USA records. In the head-to-head series between the two teams, Rice won the best-of-three set two games to one. That advantage clinched Rice’s spot as the No. 1 seed at the upcoming C-USA Championship Tournament, scheduled to get underway May 22 at Reckling Park. The tournament features four days of pool play, followed by a single championship final May 26.

Now in his 22nd season at Rice and 33rd season overall as a collegiate head coach, Wayne Graham knows that streaks of winning championships cannot be taken for granted.

“This was the hardest one of all,” Graham said. “It’s not so much that we don’t have a very good team. I think we do. It seems like everybody can beat you nowadays.”

C-USA Championship Tournament games will be played at 11 a.m., 3 p.m. and 7 p.m. May 22-25 (Wednesday through Saturday), and the C-USA championship game will be at 1 p.m. May 26. The Owls’ first game will be May 22 at 7 p.m. versus the University of Alabama, Birmingham. For ticket information and more on the C-USA Championship Tournament, visit www.riceowls.com.

About David Ruth

David Ruth is director of national media relations in Rice University's Office of Public Affairs.