NORMAN, Okla. -- The 12/9 Oklahoma women’s basketball team (18-4, 8-3) will host Texas (16-9, 5-6) for Pack the Place Pink Night’ at the Lloyd Noble Center on Monday at 6 p.m. Free pink t-shirts in support of the fight against breast cancer will be placed in all 12,000 seats in the arena and fans are encouraged to wear them upon reaching their seat. General admission tickets remain at the cost of $8 adults and $5 for children.
The game will be broadcast to a national audience by ESPN2. Mark Jones, Doris Burke and sideline reporter Rebecca Lobo will call the action. Fans throughout the state can also listen to the game through the Sooner Sports Radio Network and flagship station KOKC-1520 AM with Brian Brinkley and Tara DeGiusti. The radio broadcast can also be picked up on the internet through Yahoo! Radio.
The Sooners will attempt to avoid the same trap they fell into 13 days ago. On Jan. 31, the Sooners traveled to Austin after being upset by Texas A&M at home two days earlier. They fell prey to the Longhorns, who forced 24 turnovers in route to a 67-62 upset. This past Saturday the offense was provided as by Courtney Paris and freshman Amanda Thompson. Paris had 25 points and 14 rebounds to clinch her 50 consecutive double-double. Thompson came off the bench to play 32 minutes and score 13 points.
Texas has lost is its last two games to Oklahoma State and Kansas. The Cowgirls easily outpaced the Longhorns 77-58 at Gallagher Iba Arena last Wednesday. Then Kansas, which had one league win entering the contest, pulled an upset at the Erwin Center when KU guard Shaquina Mosley hit a floater with 0.4 second left to seal the victory.
Setting The Scene
Date: Monday, Feb. 12, 2007
Location: Norman, Okla.
Venue: Lloyd Noble Center (12,000)
Tipoff: 6 p.m. Central
TV Talent: Mark Jones, Doris Burke & Rebecca Lobo
Radio: Sooner Sports Radio Network & Yahoo! Radio (subscription)
Radio Talent: Brian Brinkley & Tara DeGiusti
Radio Broadcast Info
Tickets: (800) 456-GoOU
Promotions: Pack the Place Pink Night (12,000 free t-shirts), Above & Beyond Travel giveaway
Player To Watch
Freshman point guard Jenna Plumley took over the floor general reins of the Oklahoma team in the Sooners’ loss at Texas A&M last weekend. Plumley registered 19 minutes in the second half and only left the court during offensive for defensive switches when OU was fouling in the final minute. The Red Rock, Okla., native tallied five points and four assists. She finished the game with career bests in steals (4) and minutes played (24).
Recap - Texas A&M 78, OU 68
The No. 12/9 Oklahoma women’s basketball team (18-4, 8-3) relinquished its year and a half hold on first place in the Big 12 on Saturday afternoon when No. 16/19 Texas A&M (19-4, 9-2) upset the Sooners, 78-68, for the second time in as any meetings this season.
Texas A&M junior guard Takia Starks had 17 first half points to lead the Aggies to a 37-29 lead at halftime in College Station.
Sooner All-American Courtney Paris had just 6 points at the break and was just 2-7 from the field. Paris missed several lay-ups, as did her teammates who were just 11-25 from the floor and 5-10 at the free throw line in the opening session.
OU came out of the half on fire and took a two-point lead at 41-39 by the 17 minute mark.
The Sooner rally was ignited by a new starting second half lineup of freshman Jenna Plumley, freshman Amanda Thompson, senior Chelsi Welch, sophomore Ashley Paris and her sister, Courtney. That lineup was different from the starting five that opened the game. Seniors Erin Higgins and Leah Rush opened the game in place of Plumley and Thomson.
Plumley would play nearly the entire second half, in route to a career high 24 minutes played.
While she positively affected the Sooner offense with four assists and five points, she struggled defensively against A&M point guard Aquonesia Franklin, who scored 20 of her 25 points in the final frame.
Franklin had 10 points in the final 6:36 of the game.
Starks also finished with 25 points to share game high honors with Franklin and Paris, who also grabbed 14 rebounds.
The loss drops the Sooners into third place in the Big 12. A&M owns a half game lead on Nebraska, who plays later this evening. It marks the first time OU has not been in first place in the Big 12 standings since the conclusion of the 2004-05 season.
OU had won 24 straight regular season Big 12 games before dropping three of its last four, including two to A&M. The Sooners other loss came to Texas, which travels to Norman in two days for a Big Monday contest on ESPN2 (6 p.m.).
Thompson also played a career high in minutes, 32, and scored in double figures for the first time in league play. The freshman forward had 13 points and six rebounds.
OU shot 48.1 percent from the field but just 57.1 percent at the free throw line and 18 percent from 3-point range. The Sooners turned the ball over 24 times, as opposed to A&M’s 15.
Paris collected her 50th consecutive double-double, which is the longest known streak in NCAA Division I women’s basketball history. She also surpassed Molly McGuire (1980-83) for the OU career double-double record with her 55th in 58 career games.
OU is 45-61 all-time against ranked opponents and 4-3 against ranked teams this season. OU is 41-33 when it is ranked and facing a ranked team ... OU started the game with Kendra Moore, Chelsi Welch, Leah Rush, Erin Higgins and Courtney Paris. The second half starting lineup was Jenna Plumley, Chelsi Welch, Amanda Thompson, Ashley Paris and Courtney Paris .. . It was the first time Sherri Coale had changed her lineups at the half this season ... Plumley’s four assists were two off her career high of six set against New Mexico on Dec. 30 Thompson has scored in double figures five times this season ... Courtney Paris needed just 58 games to reach 55 double-doubles and to pass Molly McGuire.
The Texas Longhorns are 16-9 on the season and 5-6 in Big 12 play. UT has been upset in its two most recent outings against Oklahoma State and Kansas.
OU is 10-20 against the Longhorns all-time. The series is tied 6-6 when the game is played in Norman.
Texas is led by Jody Conradt, who has a 898-302 career record. She is the active Big 12 leader in career wins with 110 opposed to 61 losses. OU’s Sherri Coale is tied for second with Iowa State’s Bill Fennelly with 105 career wins.
In league play, the Longhorns are averaging 62.2 points and shooting 39.2 from the field. They are holding opponents to a 38.9 shooting percentage and allowing 59.3 points per game. UT has made just 32 3-pointers and is outrebounding opponents by 1.2 boards per game.
All-American Tiffany Jackson leads the Longhorns in points (17.2), rebounds (9.0), steals (2.6) and blocks (1.2). Her point and rebound total ranks fourth in the Big 12. She is tops in the league in steals per game and second in minutes per game (34.4)
Texas lost 10.5 points per game when sophomore Erika Arriaran went down with a season ending knee injury against Purdue a month ago. In her absence the Longhorns have five players averaging 8-plus points in league action. Jackson is the only Longhorn averaging double figures offensively.
Junior guard Erneisha Bailey is second on the team in scoring in Big 12 play at 9.5. Bailey is shooting 43.8 percent from the field and has not made a 3-pointer. Redshirt-freshman Carla Cortijo is averaging 9.4 points per game and has hit a team high nine 3s in league play.
Texas has three rookies in their starting lineup. Joining Cortijo are true freshman Brittainey Raven and Earnesia Williams. Raven, who was a top-10 recruit out of high school, is averaging 9.1 points and shooting 37 percent from the floor. Williams, who was recruited by OU out of Sapulpa high school, is tallying 8.1 points and 5.0 rebounds. Williams played AAU ball with Sooner freshman Jenna Plumley on the Oklahoma Air Stars.
In the first meeting of the season, which was just 13 days ago, OU was upset by the Longhorns who forced 24 Sooner turnovers. Courtney Paris was held in check in the first half before exploding for 25 points and 18 rebounds before all was said and done.
Pink OUt Planned for Texas
The OU Athletics Department will a hold a “Pack The Place Pink Night” for the Feb. 12 Red River Rivalry match up with Texas on ESPN2. In an effort to promote breast cancer awareness and early detection, free pink t-shirts will be placed in every seat and fans are encouraged to put them on when they arrive.
The coaching staffs of both teams will all wear an item of pink and both squads will wear pink t-shirts during warm-ups. Fans are encouraged to donate to breast cancer research when they enter the arena. Volunteers will be available on the concourse to take donations.
OU moved down to No. 13 in the latest round of RPI numbers released by the NCAA on Feb. 6.
Sherri Coale currently has 105 Big 12 wins, which is second among active coaches. She trails league leader and Texas head coach Jody Conradt (110).
OU has won a record 39 straight games against unranked teams at home. The streak dates back to a loss to SMU on Dec. 21, 2002.
Courtney Paris is averaging 30.3 points and 17 rebounds in the last three games. Paris has shot 68 percent (25-37) from the field in the last two games. In the five game prior she shot 36-82 (.439) from the field.
Historic Defensive Stretch
OU has held 18 of 22 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 .339. Only Ohio State (.450), Texas Tech (.443), Texas (.435) and Texas A&M (.475) 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 (44.9) is second in the Big 12 and Leah Rush (43.5) ranks third. Britney Brown (34.6) and Jenna Plumley (35.1) are also shooting over 34 percent from long range. As a team OU ranks fourth in the Big 12 and 34rd nationally with a 3-point percentage of 35.3.
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:
Kendra Moore has cranked up her game during Big 12 play. The Sooner senior point guard has come off the bench to average 7.5 points since the start of Big 12 play. The Ardmore, Okla., native has scored 82 of her season total of 98 points (83.7 percent) since the start of Big 12 play. She is also averaging 2.1 steals per game during league action, which is the second-best mark in league play.
For the first time in program history, the OU women’s basketball team will likely go over 100,000 fans in a single season. 91,917 fans have turned out for nine home contests this season, which means OU should eclipse the 100,000 mark when Texas comes to town for the Big 12 Monday game on Feb. 12th.
OU sold a record 6,526 season tickets this year. That has led to a record average attendance of 10,213. The attendance average is currently the fourth best in Division I basketball, which is another program record.
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.
Higgins Heating Up
Erin Higgins began the season in a slump from 3-point land. The OU all-time leader in 3-pointer made just 20 percent of her attempts in the first eight games and had just one multiple trey game during that span.
She has found her stroke in the last 14 games, shooting 38 percent and making 25 of 66 attempts. She has tallied 83 points over that span after having 25 combined in the first eight games. On the season Higgins is shooting 31.7 percent from 3-point range.
Big 12 History
All-time, OU has a 105-66 (.614) Big 12 record under head coach Sherri Coale. The Sooners have won four regular season titles (2000, 2001, 2002, 2006) and three Big 12 Championships (2002, 2004, 2006). The Sooners were picked by the coaches to win the 2006-07 regular season title.
Since the 1999-00 season, OU has won 75 percent of its regular season Big 12 games for a record of 91-30. That winning percentage is the best in the Big 12 during that time frame.
OU’s all-time wins total in regular season Big 12 play ranks third among member schools. The Sooners trail No. 1 Texas Tech (123) and Texas (110). Coale (105) is currently second in Big 12 wins among active coaches behind Jody Conradt (110) of Texas.
Last season Oklahoma became the first team in Big 12 history to run the table to a perfect 16-0 record in league play. Then OU won three straight Big 12 Tournament games to go 19-0 against the league in 2005-06. The overall record is a Big 12 record.
This season marked the third time OU has started league play 7-0. OU also accomplished the feat in 1999-00 and 2005-06.
Overall, OU is 57-27 (.678) in Big 12 games played at the Lloyd Noble Center and 48-39 (.552) in conference road contests.
Time to Talk About Rush
Leah Rush, the nation’s Most Underrated Player last season, is playing some of the best basketball of her career. Rush is third on the OU team in scoring at 9.8 points per game and is posting career highs in 3-point percentage (43.9), field goal percentage (51.3) and assist-to-turnover ratio (0.81). She ranks seventh in the Big 12 in field goal percentage.
55 Double-Doubles, 50 straight | Every Paris Double-Double
Courtney Paris has 55 career double-doubles in 58 career games. She has recorded a double-double in 50 straight games. The streak began against UCLA on Dec. 5, 2005. The streak will be 434 days old when OU takes the court next.
50 Straight Double-Doubles
Courtney Paris has collected a double-double in 50 straight games. It is the longest known double-double streak in the history of NCAA Division I women’s basketball and is 10 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.
Career Double-Double Record
Courtney Paris claimed the OU career double-double record on Feb. 10 when she reached 55 against Texas A&M. Pa