Morning After Blog: Breaking down Oklahoma State’s WNIT run
(Yes, I’m stealing this title from recently departed OU football writer Travis Haney. I hope he doesn’t mind.)
Yesterday’s WNIT championship win for the Oklahoma State women’s basketball team was about so much more than basketball, and I wrote it as such in my story in Sunday’s Oklahoman.
But understandably lost in the shuffle of such an emotional win–and journey–was just how well the Cowgirls played during the WNIT. So let’s look purely at basketball for a bit and break down this postseason run for the Cowgirls.
The Cowgirls finished the season winning nine of their last 10 games. They won their final three regular season-games to get back into consideration for the NCAA Tournament, then lost its Big 12 Tournament opener against Missouri, then won six in a row to capture the WNIT title.
This WNIT run was the latest OSU has ever played into March, surpassing its NCAA Sweet 16 run in 2008. The Cowgirls’ final game that season against LSU was played on March 29.
OSU’s 18 home victories set a school record.
Jim Littell finished the season with 21 victories as head coach, the first OSU coach to accomplish that in their first season.
OSU never trailed in the second half of the WNIT.
OSU’s core of point guard Tiffany Bias and posts Liz Donohoe and Toni Young simply dominated in the WNIT. Young was named the tournament MVP, while Donohoe was named to the All-Tournament team. Bias, honestly, deserved to be on the All-Tournament team, as well. She was on my ballot.
Coming into the WNIT, here are those players’ season averages:
Bias: 12.7 points, 6.5 assists, 3.2 rebounds, 2.5 steals per game
Donohoe: 12.3 points, 7.1 rebounds per game
Young: 10.0 points, 6.7 rebounds, 0.8 blocks per game
Bias: 15 points, 7.8 assists, 3.0 rebounds, 2.2 steals per game
Donohoe: 17 points, 11 rebounds per game
Young: 20.7 points, 8.7 rebounds, 2.0 blocks per game
Final season averages:
Bias: 13.1 points, 6.7 assists, 3.1 rebounds, 2.5 steals per game
Donohoe: 13.1 points, 7.8 rebounds per game
Young: 12.0 points, 7.0 rebounds, 1.0 blocks per game
Young’s performance was absolutely worthy of being the WNIT MVP, but Donohoe’s continued development may be the most important long-term. Five of the Big 12 Freshman of the Year’s eight double-doubles on the season came in her final five contests. That’s huge for her confidence level. And Bias is going to be a star in the Big 12 the next two seasons.
“We opened it up a little bit more and trusted (Bias) to really cut loose and play like she’s capable of playing,” Littell said. “She’s got a big motor. And then we also, at the same time, about a month and a half ago made a conscious effort (to get) good balance between inside and outside game and going to (Young). …Liz had a great WNIT tournament and she just continues to amaze me.”
With her 11 assists Saturday, Bias broke the OSU single-season record of 220 held by Andrea Riley. Bias finished with 229.
OSU shot 46.7 percent from the field in the WNIT, well above its regular-season mark of 38.6 percent. The Cowgirls logged their second-, third- and sixth-best shooting performances of the season against San Diego (51.9 percent), Colorado (50.9) and James Madison (48.3), respectively. Before the tournament, the last time OSU had shot that well was when it made 50.7 percent of its field goals against Arkansas Pine Bluff in December.
Message Sent Successfully
Be Sure to Check Out Our Top Headlines
- 90847Oklahoma weather: Severe storm updates
- 38051Oklahoma devastated by second round of twisters
- 13823Oklahoma City tornado so large, may not be recognized, officials say
- 13567Oklahoma State football: Limiting Wes Lunt's transfer options makes Mike Gundy look bad
- 12400Oklahoma tornadoes: 'It took it all'
- 12196Several kids pulled out of Oklahoma school rubble alive
- 11468How to help tornado victims
- 10241At least 51 die in Oklahoma tornado, official says
- 7786Tornado in Oklahoma City suburb causes destruction
- 6766Oklahoma weather: Crews work to clear storm damage in Oklahoma City as the state braces for severe weather Sunday.
Back to share with a friend form.
Add More Recipients