Sooners and Cyclones Clash in Ames
SATURDAY'S GAME BASICS
Oklahoma (5-10, 1-3 Big 12) returns to action as the Sooners travel to Ames to take on No. 18/19 Iowa State (13-4, 3-2 Big 12) inside Hilton Coliseum. OU has won six straight matchups against the Cyclones.
ON THE AIR
Saturday's game will be streamed on Cyclones.tv with Chris Williams (play-by-play) and Molly Parrott (analyst) on the call. 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
• Oklahoma returns to action after not playing a midweek Big 12 game. The Sooners have won six straight meetings against the Cyclones, including three consecutive wins in Ames. The Sooners have never four straight meetings in Ames in series history. OU swept the season series a year ago, topping the Cyclones in Ames, 74-69, behind 21 points from Shaina Pellington on Dec 31, 2017. The Sooners defeated Iowa State, 80-71, in Norman.
• A win would mark the Sooners' first road win over a top-25 opponent since defeating then No. 21 Iowa State, 75-54, in Ames on Jan. 21, 2014.
• Saturday's contest features a matchup between the Big 12's top-3-pointer and the league's best 3-point shooting team. OU freshman guard Taylor Robertson leads the conference with 4.13 3-pointers per game and ranks first among all Big 12 players with a .453 3-point shooting percentage. Iowa State averages 8.5 3-pointers per game, which ranks first in the Big 12.
• Freshman guard Taylor Robertson continues to lead the country with 4.13 3-pointers per game and ranks third nationally with 62 made 3-pointers this season. The freshman is tied for third on the Sooners' freshman record list for 3-pointers made in a single-season. Robertson has made multiple 3-pointers in 14 of 15 games this season. She is the only freshman in the country to shoot at least .450 from the field, .450 from 3-point range and .900 from the free throw line.
• Oklahoma's top six scorers are in their first or second year of Division I basketball with four of the six being freshmen. Freshman guard Taylor Robertson ranks sixth in the Big 12 in scoring with 17.3 points per game this season and leads the conference with 62 made 3-pointers. Robertson and freshman Madi Williams (13.0) 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.
PREVIEWING IOWA STATE
• Iowa State enters Saturday's contest with a 13-4 overall record and a 3-2 mark in Big 12 play after falling to West Virginia, 73-64, in Morgantown on Wednesday. The Cyclones are averaging 80.1 points per game (ranks second in the Big 12) on .450 field goal (third), .328 3-point (seventh) and .762 free throw (first) shooting. Iowa State ranks 20th nationally in scoring offense and 30th in Division I in field goal percentage.
• Senior guard Bridget Carleton leads the Big 12 and ranks 20th nationally with 20.3 points per game. The senior is averaging 25.8 points per game in league play and is third with 8.8 rebounds per game. Among Division I players, Carleton is 12th in total points (345) and 16th in free throws made (82).
• Sophomore center Kristin Scott ranks second on the team in scoring with 11.9 points per game, while also adding 6.8 rebounds a contest off the bench. Scott ranks second in the Big 12 with a .620 field goal percentage. Freshman guard Ashley Joens averages 11.4 points per game and ranks 12th in the league, shooting .374 from beyond the arc.
• Bill Fennelly is in his 24th season at Iowa State and has a 492-257 record with the Cyclones. He has led Iowa State to 17 NCAA Tournament appearances.
Tatum Veinteheimer ranks sixth in the Big 12 with 1.8 steals per game.
GAME 15 RECAP: WEST VIRGINIA
• A late comeback by Oklahoma fell short as the Sooners were edged 66-55 by West Virginia. Trailing by as many as 22 in the first half, OU battled to the final minute, but OU's late surge came up short against the Mountaineers. OU cut the deficit down to six points midway in the fourth quarter, but could not get closer.
• After shooting .280 in the first two quarters, the Sooners went 11-of-24 (.458) in the third and fourth. Similarly, the Sooner defense held WVU to 6-of-29 from the field and without a 3-pointer in the second half after allowing the Mountaineers to shoot .441 in the opening half.
• Freshman Taylor Robertson led Oklahoma with 13 points, including a team-best three treys from behind the arc. Robertson made at least one 3-pointer for the 15th straight game, setting a school record for most games with one 3-pointer to begin a season. Sophomores Shaina Pellington and Ana Llanusa both finished with a 12 points apiece. Pellington added five assists, four rebounds and two steals off the bench, while Llanusa hit a pair of triples. Freshman Tatum Veitenheimer chipped in seven points, a team-high eight rebounds and five assists.
• The Mountaineers used a quick start in the first half to carry a 38-20 advantage into halftime. WVU was 15-of-34 from the field, including draining eight shots from behind the arc in the first half. Oklahoma began to cut into the deficit in the third quarter, shooting .429 from the field to outscore WVU 16-14 during the period.
• 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 four times in the first nine weeks of the season.
• Robertson ranks first nationally in 3-pointers per game (4.13) and third in 3-point field goals made (62). 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.
• Robertson, along with 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 set the school record for most consecutive games with a 3-pointer to begin a season. The freshman has made at least one 3-pointer in 15 games this season, which ranks as the sixth-longest streak ever by a Sooner.
• Through 15 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.
• Robertson is second on OU's freshman record list with 62 made 3-pointers. Aaryn Ellenberg holds the OU freshman record with 94 treys during the 2010-11 season.
• Robertson also leads the Big 12 in free throw percentage (.917) and in 3-point shooting percentage (.453), while ranking third in minutes played (34.4). She is second among all freshmen and ranks sixth in the league in points per game (17.6).
• The freshman is one of three players from a Power Five conference to shoot 45 percent from the field, 45 percent from beyond the arc and 90 percent from the free throw line. She is the only freshman to accomplish that feat.
WELCOME BACK ANA
• OU's young roster received a boost on Jan. 2 with the return of sophomore guard Ana Llanusa. In her first game since Nov. 9, Llanusa added 11 points, six rebounds and three assists off the bench in 25 minutes against Texas Tech. She followed up with a season-high 14 points at Kansas State on Jan. 5 off the bench. The sophomore missed 10 games due to foot surgery.
• Llanusa returned to the starting lineup against Texas on Jan. 9 and has scored 10-plus points three times in her first four games back from injury.
• Llanusa averaged 12.6 points per game as a freshman last season, earning Big 12 All-Freshman Team and All-Big 12 Honorable mention honors. She has made 25 career starts and appeared in 35 career games.
• 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.
• Oklahoma head coach Sherri Coale begins her 23rd year at the helm of the OU program. Coale has a 486-252 (.659) record at OU and has led the Sooners to three Final Four appearances, four Big 12 Tournament titles and six Big 12 regular season championships. Coale is just 19 wins away from her 500th career victory and would join Jody Conradt (Texas), Kim Mulkey (Baylor) and Marsha Sharp (Texas Tech) as one of four Big 12 coaches to win at least 500 career games at their respective school.
• Taylor Robertson became the first player in the Big 12 to win four Big 12 Freshman of the Week honors during non-conference play since Baylor's Britney Griner accomplished the feat in 2010.
• 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 head to Fort Worth, Texas, on Tuesday to take on TCU inside Bramlage Coliseum. The game will be televised on FS1 and tip-off is set for 8 p.m. CT. OU leads the all-time series against TCU, 22-6, but has lost back-to-back meetings against the Horned Frogs.