The Big 12 season has been a tumultuous one to say the least for the Oklahoma Sooners women's basketball team. They've had heart breaking losses against Iowa State, West Virginia and at Texas. Then they've had very impressive wins against Iowa State on the road and popped then #11 Oklahoma State at home.
It's just a testament to how tough the Big 12 season is this season. Currently, ESPN's bracketology has six schools into the NCAA Tournament. From #7 Baylor to the Big 12 win-less Texas Tech Lady Raiders, the league is tough as nails.
Senior Aaryn Ellenberg continues her leadership through the up and down season. She proved her worth as usual in the heart breaking loss to West Virginia on Thursday night. Unfortunately it was a missed free throw by a true freshman. That wasn't even the real difference. The Sooners did not hit a field goal for the final 6:42 of the game, going 0-for-9 with six missed layups as West Virginia cut a 6-point deficit to a 71-71 tie in 3 1/2 minutes. So, the missed free throws was more of the cherry on top of a meltdown than it was one person not being able to hit free throws.
In their previous win over the Cowgirls, Oklahoma used their offensive and defensive prowess to assert themselves over Oklahoma State. One thing Oklahoma did really well defensively was limit Liz Donohoe in scoring. She finished with 11 points, but was 0-of-5 shooting and even fouled out.
Oklahoma overcame a three-point halftime deficit, led by junior Sharane Campbell's 28 points. It was just Oklahoma's third win over a ranked opponent this season. Sooners are 3-5 versus ranked opponents this season.
For #12 Oklahoma State, they're in the midst of their worst stretch of games this season. As said before, it's probably due to the depth of the conference. They're just 3-3 in their last six games, that includes the Sooners victory back on February 1st.
Tiffany Bias is the ring leader up in Stillwater for the Cowgirls. She's averaging 16.0 points per game in conference play. She had 18 in the loss to Oklahoma. Oklahoma State will look to use their conference's best defense, 20th nationally, allowing just 57.4 ppg, to limit the Sooners. On the other of things, the Sooners are averaging 78.3 ppg, second in the conference and 28th nationally.
Keys to winning this game rely on points off turnovers. Oklahoma did a really good job at turning 17 turnovers into 13 Sooner points. Being aggressive defensively and getting your hands into passing lanes could prove crucial for a team trying to win a big away game.
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Also, Oklahoma attacked the rim relentlessly in their first meeting. They were able to get to the line 31 times, the best part is they hit 26 of those attempts. Those free points are a must for the Sooners, who aren't very used to getting to the line. They rank 8th in the Big 12 in free throws attempted.
The game is on ESPN 2 if you're unable to attend the game. However, you should travel up the I-35 and head to Stillwater and support your Sooners.
Bedlam can be tough. Over the 39 years of doing battle against one another in women's basketball, Oklahoma owns the 56-37 in the 93 meetings. However, when the two teams do battle in Stillwater, it's really close. Oklahoma leads the away series 21-19. However, Oklahoma has dropped the last two games in Gallagher-Iba.
Follow @OKCChuck for your in game updates, as he'll be live from Gallagher-Iba for the game.