NORMAN, Okla. -- The No. 13/11 Oklahoma women’s basketball team (21-4, 11-3) will celebrate the careers of six seniors and attempt to stave off the red-hot Missouri Tigers (17-10, 5-9) at the Lloyd Noble Center on Sunday at 2 p.m. Senior ceremonies will begin approximately 10 minutes after the conclusion of the game. A few hundred general admission tickets remain at $8 for adults and $5 for children.
The Big 12 tilt will be broadcast throughout Oklahoma by the Sooner Sports Network. It can be found on KAUT-UPN (Cox Channel 16) in Oklahoma City and Cox Channel 3 in Tulsa. ESPN’s Full Court package will also carry the game live for viewers outside the Oklahoma market. As usual the game can be found on KOKC-1520 AM with the regular team of Brian Brinkley and Tara DeGiusti.
Missouri enters Saturday with a deceptive 5-9 mark in Big 12 play. The Tigers are playing their best basketball of the season and have won three straight games over Kansas, Nebraska and Kansas State. Prior to the win streak, Mizzou took Baylor to the wire in Waco and pushed Texas A&M in a six-point loss in Columbia. The Tigers feature a starting lineup of four seniors, led by standouts EeTisha Riddle and Tiffany Brooks. Riddle is averaging 16.5 points and 7.9 rebounds at the forward position, while Brooks is tallying 13.3 points and 3.6 boards as a guard.
OU will celebrate the careers of Britney Brown, Kendra Moore, Erin Higgins, Leah Rush, Krista Sanchez and Chelsi Welch. The six pack of seniors are among the most accomplished in OU history. They have won two Big 12 Postseason Championships and one Big 12 Regular Season Championship. Rush, Welch and Higgins will go down as three of the most deadly offensive weapons in Sooner history. While Brown’s junior campaign, Moore’s late game heroics and Sanchez’s reserve role outbursts will go down in Sooner lore forever.
While the seniors will be celebrated on Sunday, the season finale is not until Wednesday when No. 14 Baylor comes to LNC. The Lady Bears meet A&M on Sunday, which means next Wednesday could potentially be for the Big 12 regular season crown.
Setting The Scene
Date: Sunday, Feb. 25, 2007
Location: Norman, Okla.
Venue: Lloyd Noble Center (12,000)
Tipoff: 2 p.m. Central
Radio: Sooner Sports Network & Yahoo! Radio (subscription)
Radio Talent: Brian Brinkley & Tara DeGiusti
Radio Broadcast Info
Tickets: (800) 456-GoOU
Promotions: First 8,000 fans will receive free OU trading cards, Senior Day, Sooner Kid’s Club Day
TV: Sooner Sports Network (KAUT-UPN Cox 16)
TV Talent: Bob Carpenter & Kenny Mossman
|Missouri TV Listings||Station & Channel|
|Enid||KXOK Cable Ch. 32|
|Lawton||KSWX Cable Ch. 5|
|Guymon||Channel 22 PTCI|
|Tulsa||Cox Channel 3|
|KOMI Channel 24|
|ESPN Full Court||Varies by cable carrier|
|KAUT-UPN Channel 43|
|Dish Network||Channel 43 or channel 8,895|
Player To Watch
Leah Rush is the headliner in a senior class of six that will be celebrated following Sunday’s game. Rush is averaging 9.3 points this season and is 13th on the OU career scoring list with a 1,338 points. Britney Brown, Erin Higgins, Kendra Moore, Krista Sanchez and Kendra Moore will also be honored. The senior class is the largest since Coale graduated six from the 2002 Final Four team.
Big 12 Tickets
The Oklahoma Athletics Ticket Office has small number of Phillips 66 Women’s Big 12 Championship all-session tickets up for public sale.
Reserved all-session tickets are $80.
Tickets will be sold on a first-come, first-served basis while supplies last and may be purchased in person at the Athletics Ticket Office or by calling (800) 456-GoOU or (405) 325-2424.
Recap -OU 76, Kansas 70
(AP) - Courtney Paris had 32 points and 13 rebounds for her 53rd straight double-double and No. 13 Oklahoma overcame shaky foul shooting to pull away late and beat Kansas 76-70 Wednesday night.
Oklahoma (21-4, 11-3 Big 12) entered the game tied with Texas A&M and Baylor for the conference lead. However, the last-place Jayhawks (9-18, 3-11) trailed only 62-60 when Kelly Kohn hit a 3-pointer with 3:24 to go.
Oklahoma had never led by more than four against the smaller, quicker home team until Ashley Paris hit one of two free throws to make it 62-57 a moment earlier.
But after Kohn’s 3-pointer, Erin Higgins immediately answered with a 3 for the Sooners, who were just 2-for-10 from beyond the arc. Then after Courtney Paris rebounded a Kansas miss, Amanda Thompson banked home a 12-footer and the Sooners had a 67-60 lead en route to their ninth straight victory over the Jayhawks.
Helplessly outmanned underneath the basket by the 6-4 Courtney Paris and her 6-3 sister, Ashley, the Jayhawks played rough in the second half, and sending Oklahoma to the foul line late proved smart. The Sooners were only 18-for-32 from the line, while Kansas - 8-for-8 at one point - hit 12 of 17.
Courtney Paris also had three assists, making her the first Big 12 player with 1,300 points, 900 rebounds, 200 blocked shots and 100 assists.
The Sooners used their size advantage, led by the Paris sisters, to outrebound the Jayhawks 42-25. Oklahoma started four players 6-feet or taller while the 6-1 Porscha Weddington was the only Jayhawks starter over 6-0.
Ashley Paris had 16 points and nine rebounds for the Sooners while Britney Brown had 14 points, including a free throw with 4:31 left that put Oklahoma back on top by three points after two free throws by Shaquina Mosley made it 59-57.
Mosley, a senior playing her final home game, had 20 points while Kohn had 16 and Sade Morris 13.
The Sooners hit their first eight shots, with the Paris sisters getting every bucket except the 16-footer Chelsi Welch hit.
For the third consecutive game OU stayed with the same starting lineup of Jenna Plumley (point guard), Erin Higgins (guard), Amanda Thompson (forward), Ashley Paris (forward) and Courtney Paris (center) ... That lineup is 3-0 ... OU made its first eight shots, including four lay-ups by Ashley Paris and three by Courtney Paris ... At halftime, OU was shooting 64 percent (16-25), had 11 assists and scored 28 of 37 points in the paint ... OU had 16 turnovers but did not commit one after the 8:57 mark of the second half ... Jenna Plumley made the first 15 free throw attempts of her career before missing the 16th attempt in the final minute of the game ... Britney Brown’s 14 points are a season high and just the second time she has scored in double figures this season ... Courtney Paris (32 points and 13 rebounds) extended her consecutive double-double streak to 53 and now has 58 double-doubles in 61 career games ... Courtney Paris moved up to No. 11 on the OU career scoring list surpassing Tami Rogers, who had 1,353 from 1986-90 ... The 32 point effort marked the ninth time Courtney Paris has scored 30 or more points and the fourth time this season ... Ashley Paris scored in double figures for the ninth time this season ... It marks the 16th time that the Paris twins have scored in double figures in the same game ... OU is 15-1 on those occasions ... Ashley Paris had 10 points by the 8 minute mark of the first half ... She scored OU’s first six points and eight of the first 10 for the Sooners ... The forward finished the game with 16 points, tying a career high set against DePaul this year.
Just like Oklahoma, Missouri has won three straight Big 12 games. Unlike OU, Mizzou is in 10th place in the Big 12 standings at 5-9. The Tigers are 17-10 on the season.
Missouri is arguably playing its best basketball of the season led by the play of four seniors. Mizzou has won at Kansas, at Nebraska and in Columbia against Kansas State during the three game streak. The closest of those three games was an eight-point win over Kansas State on Wednesday.
Prior to the three game streak, Mizzou pushed Baylor to the wire in a 71-70 loss in Waco. The Tigers also scored a near upset in a 76-70 loss to Texas A&M on Feb. 7.
Senior Eetisha Riddle, who has won a pair of Big 12 Player of the Week awards, has burst onto the Big 12 scene this season and is battling for all-conference honors. She is averaging 16. 5 points and 7.9 rebounds in her first season.
Senior guard Tiffany Brooks is second on the team in scoring at 13. 3. Also in double figures offensively are Alyssa Hollins (12.1) and Carlynn Savant (11.4). Both Hollins and Savant are shooting above 40 percent from 3-point range. Savant led the Big 12 in three-point shooting percentage last season and ranks third this season. She is also leading the league in free throw percentage.
Riddle averaged four points against OU last season, while Brooks averaged 13, including a 24-point outburst in the Big 12 Championship.
Last season OU defeated a Missouri squad that reached the NCAA Tournament by 15 in Columbia and by 21 in the Big 12 Championship semifinals. OU shot a combined 52 percent from the field and 43 percent from 3-point range in those contests. In Columbia, OU had a 20 point lead at halftime thanks to early outputs of 13 by Courtney Paris and 11 by Kendra Moore. In the Big 12 Championship meeting, OU led 46-17 at the intermission and had four players with eight or more points.
OU trails in the all-time series with Missouri 22-28, but is 12-9 when the teams meet in Norman. OU has won three straight in the series and seven of eight dating back to 1999.
Below is OU’s RPI by the NCAA and predictor website College Basketball News, Jeff Sagarin and College RPI. The numbers in parentheses are strength of schedule
College Basketball News: 15 (26)
Sagarin: 13 (19)
College RPI: 15 (33)
Sherri Coale currently has 108 Big 12 wins, which is second among active coaches. She trails league leader and Texas head coach Jody Conradt (110).
Courtney Paris’ double-double streak is at 53 games, which is the longest known streak in men’s or women’s basketball Division I basketball. She’ll need to extend her streak onto a professional career if she ever hopes to catch Wilt Chamberlain’s NBA record and the longest known basketball record of 227 consecutive double-doubles.
OU has won 16 straight games, including 14 in regular season play, against Big 12 North teams. The last loss to the North was at Nebraska in 2005.
OU has won a record 40 straight games against unranked teams at home. The streak dates back to a loss to SMU on Dec. 21, 2002.
OU has won 32 of 38 games away from Norman over the last two seasons. The Sooners are 20-4 at home during the same time span.
Big 12 Update
Oklahoma is in a three-way tie for first place in the Big 12 standings with Baylor and Texas A&M. All three teams have 11-3 league records. OU owns a potential tiebreaker with Baylor, although it still has to face the Lady Bears in the season finale at the Lloyd Noble Center on Feb. 28. Baylor and Texas A&M meet in Waco at 2 p.m. on Sunday. Texas A&M currently owns a potential tiebreaker with OU (series sweep ) and Baylor.
Any tie in terms of Big 12 regular season record results in a co-Championship. The tiebreakers are used to decide seeding in the Big 12 Championship.
If OU & Baylor Win on Sunday
If Oklahoma and Baylor win on Sunday, the outright Big 12 Regular Season Championship will be on the line at the Lloyd Noble Center on Wednesday, Feb. 28 when the two teams meet. If this happens, it will be the first time in Big 12 or Big 8 history that the regular season championship has been decided in the final game of the regular season between two teams tied for first place.
A couple notes...
The only other time at least a share of the title was up for grabs between two teams was in 2005, when Baylor beat Texas Tech. Baylor won the Championship outright, while Tech was playing for a shared title.
On one occasion two teams met for the outright title in the old Southwest Conference days. Texas Tech beat A&M in Lubbock in 1994 to win the title. It was the only such meeting in SWC history.
On two occasions in the Big 8, Missouri and Kansas State met with the Tigers already guaranteed a share of the regular season title. In both cases in 1984 and 1987, Kansas State won and claimed a share of the regular season title.
If OU & Texas A&M Win on Sunday
If Oklahoma and Texas A&M both win on Sunday, both squads will be playing for a shared title. OU plays Baylor next Wednesday and the Aggies host Texas. If A&M and OU share a title, A&M will be the No. 1 seed in the Big 12 Championship thanks to a season sweep of the Sooners.
On two previous occasions, the Big 12 has had shared titles. In 2000 Iowa State, Texas Tech and OU shared the title and in 2004 Texas and K-State shared it.
On the Milestone Verge...
Courtney Paris 36 points shy of 1,400 career points. Paris (308) is six shy of OU career offensive rebound record (313 by Phylesha Whaley) and three shy of No. 2 on the OU defensive rebounds list. She is also 77 points shy of passing No. 10 Etta Maytubby (1,451) on the OU career scoring list.
Leah Rush (1,338 points) is 16 points shy of passing No. 11 Tami Rogers (1,353 points) on the OU career scoring list.
Chelsi Welch (1,120) is 29 points shy of passing No. 18 Mandy Wade (1,148 points) on the OU career scoring list.
Frosh to the Rescue
OU head coach Sherri Coale wanted to infuse energy and shake up her team after losing three of four Big 12 games recently. The result was the addition of freshman point guard Jenna Plumley and freshman forward Amanda Thompson to the starting lineup against Texas on Feb. 12. The duo ignited a 20-point win over their Red River Rivals and helped OU clinch a 70-67 win at Texas Tech.
Plumley is averaging just 3.9 points and 1.5 assists on the season but she has cranked up her output in the last four games, when she has received her most significant minutes of the conference season. She is averaging 11.3 points, 3.8 assists and 2.5 steals during that span. She is also shooting 44 percent from the field and 50 percent from 3-point range.
Thompson has been garnering meaningful minutes all season but has really contributed over the last five games. She is averaging 7.4 points, 6.2 boards and 2 assists during that stretch.
Plumley Named Rookie of the Week
Oklahoma freshman point guard Jenna Plumley was named Big 12 Rookie of the Week on Monday. In the first two starts of her career, Plumley averaged 16.5 points, 5 assists, 4 rebounds, 2.5 steals and 4.5 three-pointers in wins over Texas and Texas Tech last week. Plumley broke or reset 12 career single game highs in the two contests.
Historic Defensive Stretch
OU has held 20 of 25 opponents, including its first nine opponents, below 40 percent shooting this season. The previous record for consecutive opponents held below 40 percent was seven and set in 1984-85.
The Sooners have held six opponents under 30 percent shooting, all in the last 14 games. Earlier in the season, OU also held South Carolina, Arkansas Pine Bluff and Northern Colorado below 30 percent in consecutive outings. That streak is an OU record. OU has held two straight opponents below 30 percent on eight occasions in the program history.
OU is first in the Big 12 in field goal percentage defense at .337. Only Ohio State (.450), Texas Tech (.443), Texas (.435) , Texas A&M (.475) and Kansas (41.3) have shot over 40 percent against OU this season. The lowest mark was .224 by Arkansas-Pine Bluff and Northern Colorado. Last season 24 of 36 opponents failed to reach the 40 percent mark against OU.
3-Point Threats Everywhere
While Erin Higgins is the most recognizable 3-point shooter on the OU roster, she hasn’t been the most proficient this season. In fact, OU has three of the top seven long range shooters in the league. Chelsi Welch (45.2) is second in the Big 12. Jenna Plumley (41.5) and Leah Rush (42.0) would rank fourth and third, respectively, if they had the necessary 24 makes. Britney Brown is also shooting a respectable 35.7 from long range. As a team OU ranks second in the Big 12 and 29th nationally with a 3-point percentage of 36.0.
1,000 Point Club Membership | OU 1,000 Point Scorers
Three current Sooners - Leah Rush, Courtney Paris and Chelsi Welch - are in the OU 1,000 point club. Rush reached the career milestone against Baylor on Feb. 12, 2006. Courtney Paris and Chelsi Welch both reached it against Ohio State on Dec. 20, 2006. It marks the third time that OU has had three 1,000 point scorers on the same team. The other instances were 1994-95 (Angi Guffy, Mandy Wade and Etta Maytubby) and 2001-02 (Stacey Dales, LaNeishea Caufield, Caton Hill). Only 11 known NCAA Division I teams have had four players with 1,000 career points.
Erin Higgins is also closing in on the 1,000 career points and could reach the milestone by the end of the season. Below is her projection, in terms of games needed to get to 1,000:
For the first time in program history, the OU women’s basketball team has reached a season attendance total in excess of 100,000 fans. 103,162 fans have turned out for 10 home contests this season, which averages out to 10,316, which is an OU record and the fourth best mark nationally. OU also sold a record 6,526 season tickets this year.
Last year, OU had an average attendance of 7,630 over 13 contests. They played in front of 99,188 fans and fell just short of the 1000,000 mark.
57 Double-Doubles, 52 Straight | Every Paris Double-Double
Courtney Paris has 58 career double-doubles in 61 career games. She has recorded a double-double in 53 straight games. The streak began against UCLA on Dec. 5, 2005. The streak will be 447 days old when OU takes the court next.
53 Straight Double-Doubles
Courtney Paris has collected a double-double in 53 straight games. It is the longest known double-double streak in the history of NCAA Division I women’s basketball and is 13 longer than the longest stretch on the men’s basketball side.
Double-Double Reference | The 411 on CP3
Largely due to the numbers put up by Courtney Paris, the NCAA is currently researching the national records for career double-doubles and consecutive double-doubles in women’s basketball.
Since those records do not currently exist, the only comparison on the collegiate level is to the men’s side. Below are the top five consecutive double-double streaks in men’s basketball history and the top five career double-double marks.