Cowgirls head to WNIT semifinal on inspiring play
BY JIMMIE TRAMEL World Sports Writer
Tuesday, March 27, 2012
3/27/12 at 4:49 AM
WNIT: Who's left
STILLWATER - Only four teams are still standing in the WNIT. One of them is playing "inspired" basketball.
Colorado coach Linda Lappe said this following a quarterfinal loss Sunday to Oklahoma State: "You've got to give a lot of credit to Oklahoma State. They did a tremendous job - for everything they have been though this year - to still be playing basketball. They are definitely inspired. They are playing for something and they were a better team today."
OSU (20-12) will face San Diego (26-8) in a 7 p.m. Wednesday semifinal at Gallagher-Iba Arena. James Madison (28-7) will host Syracuse (22-14) in a 6 p.m. Wednesday semifinal. A 2 p.m. Saturday championship game will take place at a campus site.
Not only have the Cowgirls won four straight WNIT games by an average of 15.3 points, they have been behind for only eight minutes, 27 seconds and haven't trailed in the second half in any WNIT game.
Eddie Sutton showed up to watch the quarterfinal victory. Said the former OSU men's coach, "This team has certainly gotten a lot better from ... earlier in the year. That's where I think Jim (Littell) has just done a remarkable job in pulling those players together."
Littell was promoted from assistant coach to head coach after head coach Kurt Budke and assistant Miranda Serna were killed in a Nov. 17 plane crash. The Cowgirls rebounded from tragedy to challenge for an NCAA Tournament invitation, but the bubble burst when they lost a first-round Big 12 Tournament game to last-place Missouri.
"These girls are kind of on a mission right now," Littell said.
San Diego at OSU, 7 p.m. Wednesday
Syracuse at James Madison, 6 p.m. Wednesday
Semifinal winners, 2 p.m. Saturday, site TBA
Original Print Headline: 'Inspired' play lifts Cowgirls into semifinals
Jimmie Tramel 918 581-8389