Cowgirls roll past Sooners, 83-62
BY KELLY HINES World Sports Writer
Sunday, February 24, 2013
2/24/13 at 9:44 AM
STILLWATER - On Saturday, Oklahoma State didn't play like the same team that was upset by TCU on Wednesday or the team Oklahoma routed two weeks ago.
In the Bedlam rematch at Gallagher-Iba Arena, the 23rd-ranked Cowgirls ran away with a convincing 83-62 victory.
"I tell them I never know which team is going to show up," coach Jim Littell said, "but the good one showed up and they were pretty good today."
The Cowgirls (19-7, 8-7 Big 12) were dominant early, jumping out to a 23-4 lead while holding OU to 1-of-13 shooting. After a timeout, the Sooners came to life to the tune of a 25-3 run to take the lead.
"In the game of basketball, you always have runs," OSU point guard Tiffany Bias said. "We had our run to begin and they came back with a run.
"You just have to keep your composure and fight through it and get through the half."
Thirteen first-half points from Liz Donohoe helped OSU take a one-point lead into halftime, and then the team came out re-energized. Eight straight points gave the Cowgirls a comfortable cushion, and the advantage grew to 51-38 on a layup from LaShawn Jones.
"We didn't come out with the fight we had in the first half," OU guard Morgan Hook said. "We just came out there and thought it was going to fall into our hands."
In the second half, the Sooners (19-8, 9-6) couldn't contain Bias, who repeatedly breezed past defenders. She had 14 points after halftime, including 10 from the free-throw line.
"Coach really told me to push the ball, look for gaps and see if you have anybody else open or get to the hole if you need to," Bias said. "Especially on those fast breaks when they're still trying to transition and get back, it's always good to attack them."
Aaryn Ellenberg, whose 22 points led all scorers, kept her team in the game, trimming the deficit to six with nine minutes left. For OSU, the spurt could have provided flashbacks of Wednesday, when TCU trailed by 10 with five minutes late and went on the win the game.
Instead, the Cowgirls used the final five minutes to deliver the knockout punch. Toni Young secured five rebounds during that stretch to minimize opportunities for OU, whose only field goal the rest of the way came with one second left.
"They showed me something (Saturday)," Littell said of his team. "We haven't done that in the past. We've relinquished some leads."
When outrebounding opponents, the Cowgirls are 18-1 this season. OSU won the rebounding battle 49-36 and pulled down 19 offensive rebounds.
"That's the statistic that tells the tale," Sooner coach Sherri Coale said. "You can survive not shooting well if you're not giving teams extra possessions.
"Nineteen second shots (make it) hard to win, especially on the road."
Kendra Suttles paced OSU with 19 points, but her biggest contribution might have been on defense while limiting Nicole Griffin to five field goals. In the first meeting, Griffin torched the Cowgirls for 21 points.
"We worked a lot harder to not let her establish down low," Littell said. "We tried to force her farther out and get her set up about 6 or 7 feet from the basket. We let her catch way too low in Norman."
With 17 points and 12 rebounds, Young poured in her fourth straight double-double and became the third player in program history to reach 1,000 points and 1,000 rebounds in her career.
"It hasn't really hit me yet - this is my last Bedlam," Young said. " ... I think as a whole this may be one of the best memories I've had here because we came out and played as a family."
Big 12 women's basketball
|No. 23 OSU
Original Print Headline: Cowgirls roll past Sooners
Kelly Hines 918-581-8452
Oklahoma State's Toni Young works against Oklahoma's Nicole Griffin on Saturday in Stillwater. Young recorded her fourth straight double-double. NATE BILLINGS / The Oklahoman
Oklahoma State's Tiffany Bias (left) was one of four OSU players to score in double figures Saturday. NATE BILLINGS / The Oklahoman