Second Half Comeback Falls Short Against DePaul
NORMAN — Shaina Pellington and Taylor Robertson each scored 19 points, while Madi Williams poured in 18 but it would not be enough as Oklahoma fell to No. 20/17 DePaul, 87-76, inside Lloyd Noble Center on Sunday.
The Sooners (3-6) trailed by 23 points heading into the second half, but put together a furious comeback effort in the third quarter. OU outscored DePaul (7-3) by a 32-17 margin in the third quarter as Pellington and Robertson combined for 23 points in the frame. The Sooners posted a .765 (13-of-17) field goal percentage in the third quarter, its best shooting percentage in a quarter in program history.
Williams scored quickly on the first possession of the fourth quarter to cut the deficit down to 70-64 with 9:45 to play, but that would be as close as the Sooners would get as DePaul hit six straight shots to regain the momentum.
“DePaul is a fantastic basketball team. I appreciate them playing a home-and-home and for coming in here and giving us a lot of information that we can learn from," OU head coach Sherri Coale said. "They’re very, very difficult to defend, and I thought from a game plan standpoint we did some really good things.
"We needed to limit their threes. I thought if we held them below 10 threes we might have a shot. We did that. Unfortunately, we gave up a few too many twos, and some of those are just par for the course when you are guarding that way with an intention of taking away all threes, but some of them were just not getting back in defensive transitions and not communicating the matchups."
Pellington nearly recorded a triple-double for the Sooners, finishing with 19 points, a career-high nine assists and a team-high eight rebounds in 40 minutes. The sophomore finished 6-of-18 from the field and was 7-of-8 at the free throw line to finish in double figures for the seventh time this season.
Robertson picked up 13 of her 19 points on the third quarter, burying a pair of transiton 3-pointers to cut the DePaul deficit in half midway through the frame. The freshman was 3-of-4 from beyond the arc , 5-for-7 from the floor and finished 6-of-7 at the charity stripe against the Blue Demons.
Williams also added in seven rebounds and two steals in 39 minutes of action, while picking up her fourth straight game in double figures.
The Blue Demons bested the Sooners, .494-.431, from the field, while OU limited the nation's top 3-point shooting team to just eight treys. At the free throw line, the Sooners posted a season-best .885 clip (23-of-26).
DePaul won the battle on the glass by outrebounding the Sooners, 44-30. The Blue Demons outscored OU, 50-40, in the paint and 17-11 in points off turnovers.
Mart'e Grays led the Blue Demons with 26 points and logged five rebounds. Ashton Millender knocked down three 3-pointers and added in 19 points, while Chante Stonewall recorded 13 points, six rebounds and three steals for DePaul.
The Sooners return to action on Dec. 19 and close out their home non-conference slate against No. 1/1 UConn. Tip-off is set for 7:30 p.m. CT and tickets are available here.