Non-Conference Play Concludes at SMU
SATURDAY'S GAME BASICS
Oklahoma (3-7) wraps up its non-conference slate on Saturday as it travels to SMU (6-5). The Sooners nearly upset No. 1 UConn on Wednesday in Norman and were led in scoring by Taylor Robertson, who finished with 23 points and knocked down six 3-pointers.
OU has won four out of the last five meetings with SMU dating back to the 2002-03 season. The Sooners defeated SMU, 87-75, in Norman last season.
ON THE AIR
Saturday's game will be streamed on SMUMustangs.com. The contest will air on the Sooner Radio Network (KOKC 1520 AM in Oklahoma City; KREF 99.3 FM/1400 AM in Norman; TuneIn Radio App) with Brian Brinkley calling the action.
FIVE THINGS TO KNOW
• The Sooners close out non-conference play on Saturday as it travels to Dallas to face SMU. Saturday's game marks OU's first trip to Dallas to face the Mustangs since Dec. 3, 2004. OU leads the all-time series, 7-5, and defeated the Mustangs, 87-75, in Norman last season.
• SMU marks the third American Athletic Conference opponent that the Sooners have faced this season. OU pushed No. 1 UConn to the brink on Wednesday night in Norman, leading the Huskies for nearly 31 minutes. The Sooners, who played only freshmen and sophomores against UConn, became the first team this season to lead the Huskies after three quarters. OU also faced No. 17 USF on Nov. 18 in Tampa, battling tough with the Bulls before falling, 87-70.
• Oklahoma's top six scorers are in their first or second year of Division I basketball. Four of the six are freshmen. Freshman guard Taylor Robertson ranks second nationally among Division I freshmen with 18.9 points per game this season. Robertson, along with freshman Madi Williams (13.9) rank inside the top 15 in the Big 12 in points per game. Ninety-seven percent of Oklahoma's scoring comes from its freshmen and sophomore classes.
• Freshman guard Taylor Robertson leads the country with 46 made 3-pointers this season and is averaging 4.6 3-pointers per game. The freshman has scored at least 20 points in five of OU's 10 games this year and already ranks sixth on the Sooners' freshman record list for 3-pointers made in a single-season. Robertson has made multiple 3-pointers in nine of 10 games this season.
• Freshman guard/forward Madi Williams is one of two Big 12 players to average a double-double so far this season. Williams is averaging 13.7 points and 10.1 rebounds per contest through 10 games this year. Williams is third nationally in rebounding among Division I freshmen.
• SMU enters Saturday's contest with a 6-5 record after defeating CSU Bakersfield, 49-43, on Wednesday. The Mustangs rank 35th nationally in scoring defense, limiting its opponents to 55.5 points per game. SMU is 21st in Division I by holding its foes to a .340 field goal percentage.
• Senior forward Alicia Froling leads SMU with 13.5 points and 11.2 rebounds per contest, which ranks 23rd among Division I players. Froling also ranks 17th nationally with 3.6 blocks a game this season. The senior had 12 points and 15 rebounds in the Mustangs win over CSU Bakersfield on Wednesday. Froling has nine double-doubles in 11 games this season.
• Freshman guard Kayla White ranks second the squad with 12.8 points per contest, while Amber Bacon is averaging 10.1 points per game.
• SMU is under the direction of third-year head coach Travis Mays. Mays is 32-38 in his three seasons with the Mustangs and also served as the associate head coach at Texas from 2012-16.
Madi Williams picked up her third double-double of the season with 12 points and 11 rebounds versus UConn.
GAME 10 RECAP: UCONN
• Oklahoma took No. 1 UConn to the wire but narrowly fell 72-63 inside Lloyd Noble Center on Wednesday night. UConn's Napheesa Collier had 23 points and a career-high 17 rebounds while Katie Lou Samuelson added 20 points and 11 rebounds to help the Huskies overcome a 12-point, second-half deficit and win their 125th consecutive regular-season game and 57th straight non-conference regular-season game.
• Taylor Robertson scored 23 points, Shaina Pellington had 16 and Madi Williams added 12 points and 11 rebounds for Oklahoma. The Sooners led for 31 minutes as the Sooners only played freshmen and sophomores against the nation's No. 1 team. OU held UConn to a season-low .400 field goal percentage and limited the Huskies to just 2-of-17 shooting from 3-point range.
• Collier made a layup with 3:36 remaining to put UConn ahead 63-62. Collier scored again on a backdoor cut, and the Huskies remained in control from there. Oklahoma led 37-31 at halftime, the Sooners’ first halftime lead in 12 meetings with the Huskies. Robertson scored 16 points before the break, and Williams added 10. The Sooners held Connecticut to 36 percent shooting in the first half.
• Oklahoma looked ready to take control when Robertson hit a 3-pointer from the corner and was fouled. She made the free throw to give the Sooners a 45-33 lead midway through the third quarter. Robertson's 23 points were the most points scored by an individual player against UConn this year.
• Taylor Robertson has quickly made her mark as one of the top 3-point shooters in the country so far this season. She has also won Big 12 Freshman of the Week three times in the first six weeks of the season.
• Through 10 games, Robertson has five 20-point scoring games and led OU with 23 points on 8-for-15 shooting against UConn. Robertson's 23 points are the most scored by an individual player against the Huskies this season.
• The freshman finished with a career-high 27 points at Auburn on Dec. 2. Robertson knocked down seven 3-pointers in back-to-back games at New Mexico and Auburn, the first Sooner to accomplish that feat. She has scored at least 10 points in each game this season.
• Robertson has made a trey in 10 consecutive games, which is the second-longest streak in OU history to begin a season. Aaryn Ellenberg holds the OU record with 14 games with at least one 3-pointers to begin a season, which was set during the 2010-11 season.
• Robertson ranks first nationally in 3-pointers per game (4.60) and second in 3-point field goals made (46). She is on pace to smash the Big 12 record for 3-pointers per game, which was set by Laurie Koehn (3.59) of Kansas State during the 2002-03 season.
• Among Power 5 teams, Robertson, Texas Tech's Chrislyn Carr and Kentucky's Rhyne Howard are the only three freshmen to lead their respective teams in scoring so far this season. Robertson also ranks second in the Big 12 in scoring at 18.9 points per game.
• Robertson already ranks sixth all-time on OU's freshman record list with 46 made 3-pointers. Ellenberg holds the OU freshman record with 94 treys in 2010-11.
• Robertson's eight 3-pointers against WKU in the Sooners' season opener set an OU single-game record for a freshman, besting the previous mark of seven held by Morgan Hook (Stephen F. Austin, 2010-11) and Derica Wyatt (UT-Arlington, 2013-14). The McPherson, Kan., native is just one of OU six players to make eight or more 3-pointers in a single game since 2000.
ELEVATING HER GAME
• After becoming the seventh OU player to win Big 12 Freshman of the Year in 2018, Shaina Pellington has continued excel as a sophomore. Pellington averaged 13.1 points per game and posted a .492 field goal percentage as a freshman. The Pickering, Ontario, native ranks second on the team with 16.5 points per game and has a team-high 3.6 assists per contest.
• Pellington has scored in double figures in nine of OU's 10 games this season, ranking ninth in the Big 12 with 16.5 points per game. She scored her 500th career point on Nov. 28 at New Mexico, accomplishing the feat in 37 games.
• Over the last three games, Pellington is averaging 16.7 points, 5.7 rebounds and 4.3 assists per contest.
• Oklahoma's run of 19 consecutive NCAA Tournament appearances ranks as the longest active streak by a team in the Big 12 and the fifth-best active streak among Division I women's basketball teams. OU's 19 straight NCAA bids is the ninth longest streak all-time in Division I. Only Tennessee (37), Stanford (31), Connecticut (30) and Notre Dame (23) have made more consecutive appearances in the NCAA Tournament than the Sooners.
• In OU's season opener, Tatum Veitenheimer and Madi Williams became the first pair of OU freshmen to start the first game of the regular season in the Sherri Coale era. Veitenheimer and Williams are the 11th and 12th freshmen to start a season opener, respectively, under Coale. Veitenheimer is one of three freshman point guards to start a season opener in the Coale era, joining Stacey Dales and Gabbi Ortiz.
• OU is 50-30 against current members of the American Athletic Conference. SMU is the third AAC opponent that the Sooners have faced the season, joining UConn and USF.
• The Sooners tied for third place in the Big 12 with an 11-7 mark in league play during the 2017-18 season and finished the regular season ranked second in the nation in strength of schedule a year ago. OU has won at least 10 Big 12 games in 12 of the last 13 seasons.
The Sooners begin their Big 12 slate on Jan. 2 against Texas Tech. The game will tip-off at 6:30 p.m. CT inside Lloyd Noble Center and will be televised on Fox Sports Oklahoma.
OU has won 15 straight meetings against Texas Tech dating back to 2013. The Sooners last loss to the Lady Raiders in Norman came in 2005.