MuskogeePhoenix.com, Muskogee, OK

OU & OSU Sports

January 29, 2013

Coach saw progress in OU’s loss to Baylor

NORMAN – After Saturday’s 82-65 loss at Ferrell Center, the Oklahoma women have lost five straight games to Baylor going back to 2011.

Saturday, they were in the game, down nine points with 11:49 remaining, but were down 26 points with 4:49 remaining.

The Sooners picked up 33 points from junior shooting guard Aaryn Ellenberg, 12 points and 16 rebounds from senior forward Joanna McFarland, and eight points, five rebounds and five assists from junior point guard Morgan Hook. They received very little from anybody else.

Nonetheless, Sherri Coale sounded like a coach who saw more good than bad as she exited the Sooners’ meeting with the nation’s No. 1 team, saying “I thought we did some really, really good things.”

Baylor was bigger and more athletic at pretty much every position, yet the Sooners (15-4, 5-2) hung with the Lady Bears (18-1, 8-0) on the glass, only outrebounded 44-40.

“They have emphatic rebounders,” Coale said. “So, to be able to stay with them in that category bodes well for us moving forward. That’s been sort of an Achilles’ heel for us.”

Even the fact that OU was within 10 points as late as it was and kept the final number inside 20 is more than many teams have managed against Baylor.

The Lady Bears have one loss, by a point to No. 6 Stanford, but have beaten many strong teams by big margins: 80-51 over No. 5 Kentucky, 76-53 over No. 9 Tennessee, 83-49 over No. 12 Oklahoma State and 67-39 over No. 24 Iowa State.

“As you come into this game, yeah, you’re doing everything you can to win it, but you’re also trying to make sure you get better at the things that will help you win games in the future, and I thought we did that today in terms of our execution, in terms of our rebounding,” Coale said. “It got away from us a couple of times in our sureness (with the ball), but still we’ve come in here and turned it over  a lot more than 15 times.”

What the Sooners didn’t do was shoot the ball well. They made a respectable 11 of 26 from beyond the 3-point arc, but the looming presence of Baylor center and reigning player of the year Brittney Griner contributed to shooting a horrid 9 of 46 from within the 3-point arc.

Griner blocked eight shots but was nowhere in sight for a drive to the basket that should have been an easy lay-up for Ellenberg. Instead, as she reached the lane, Ellenberg turned her head and, looking for Griner, promptly lost focus and laid the ball directly into the front of the rim.

“It just makes you think twice about it,” Ellenberg said.

Nonetheless, Coale likes where her team is headed. The Sooner Nation surely wants to believer her, for the next three weeks should determine where OU finishes in the conference race and just what kind of a season the Sooners will have to draw upon as they enter, presumably, the NCAA tournament.

Wednesday, TCU visits Lloyd Noble Center in a game OU should win comfortably. What follows is a gauntlet: at West Virginia, at Kansas State, No. 13 Oklahoma State, No. 24 Iowa State and at Kansas, a team that is receiving votes in both national polls.

The schedule eases after that, though OU’s remaining slate still includes a visit to OSU and welcoming Baylor to Lloyd Noble Center.

1
Text Only
OU & OSU Sports
AP Video
US Proposes Pay-for-priority Internet Standards Wife Mourns Chicago Doctor Killed in Afghanistan FDA Proposes Regulations on E-cigarettes Kerry Warns Russia of Expensive New Sanctions Mideast Peace Talks Stall on Hamas Deal Cody Walker Remembers His Late Brother Paul Grieving South Korea Puts Up Yellow Ribbons Raw: Kerry Brings His Dog to Work Raw: Girls Survive Car Crash Into Their Bedroom Three U.S. Doctors Killed by Afghan Security Yankees' Pineda Suspended 10 Games for Pine Tar Colleagues Mourn Death of Doctors in Afghanistan Ukraine Launches Operation Against Insurgents Obama Reassures Japan on China Raw: Car Crashes Into San Antonio Pool Time Magazine Announces Top Influencers List Raw: Angry Relatives Confront SKorea Officials Bigger Riders Means Bigger Horses Out West Yankees Pineda Ejected for Pine Tar Deadly Fungus Killing Bats, Spreading in US
Poll

Should a federal judge have the power to strike down Oklahoma's ban on gay marriage?

Yes
No
     View Results
Featured Ads
Parade
Magazine

Click HERE to read all your Parade favorites including Hollywood Wire, Celebrity interviews and photo galleries, Food recipes and cooking tips, Games and lots more.
Stocks