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Oklahoma State women's basketball: Cowgirls trying to 'raise the bar' after trying 2011-12 season

OSU BASKETBALL — The Oklahoma State women's basketball team ended a trying 2011-12 season in triumph by winning the WNIT championship. Now the Cowgirls want more. They want to win the close games they lost last season and they want a solid spot in the NCAA Tournament.
BY GINA MIZELL, Staff Writer, gmizell@opubco.com Published: November 8, 2012
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photo - OSU head women's basketball coach Jim Littell poses for a photo during basketball media day for Oklahoma State University at Gallagher-Iba Arena in Stillwater, Okla., Monday, Oct. 22, 2012. Photo by Nate Billings, The Oklahoman
OSU head women's basketball coach Jim Littell poses for a photo during basketball media day for Oklahoma State University at Gallagher-Iba Arena in Stillwater, Okla., Monday, Oct. 22, 2012. Photo by Nate Billings, The Oklahoman

STILLWATER — Last March, a trying Oklahoma State women's basketball season ended in triumph, with the Cowgirls hoisting the WNIT championship trophy and with Kurt Budke's widow, Shelley, cutting down the nets inside Gallagher-Iba Arena.

This season, coach Jim Littell said the team's motto is to build on that success and “raise the bar.”

“It's going to be awful hard for anybody to upend Baylor,” Littell said. “But who says we can't compete and line up and play with everybody else? We did that last year, and we've got everybody back.”

Littell's right, of course. The Cowgirls return all five starters from last season's team that was one of the “first four out” of the NCAA Tournament. OSU beat tournament participants like Oklahoma, Texas A&M, Iowa State, Texas and Kansas, but let close games slip away against Kansas (a 65-60 loss), Kansas State (53-50), and Missouri in the first round of the Big 12 Tournament (72-68).

Win one of those contests, and the Cowgirls likely would have made the Big Dance. It was a tough lesson to learn, point guard Tiffany Bias said.

“We weren't very mature to finish games,” she said. “I think we just kind of let them slide and gave up easy buckets or didn't accomplish plays when we needed to. I think this year we have a lot more maturity.

“We learn from our experiences, which a lot of them were not good experiences (last season), but they did make us stronger in the end.”

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OSU WOMEN'S SCHEDULE

November

9 CAL POLY — 5:30 p.m.

13 at Missouri State — 7 p.m.

18 WEBER STATE — 2 p.m.

20 TEXAS PAN-AMERICAN — 7 p.m.

28 TEXAS STATE — 7 p.m.

December

1 TEXAS SOUTHERN — 2 p.m.

6 STEPHEN F. AUSTIN — 7 p.m.

16 VERMONT — 12:30 p.m.

22 at UT Arlington — 2 p.m.

28 vs. *Harvard — 9 a.m.

30 vs. *TBD

January

2 TEXAS TECH — 7 p.m.

6 at Baylor — 4:30 p.m.

8 KANSAS — 7 p.m.

13 at Texas — 11:30 a.m.

20 IOWA STATE — noon

23 at Kansas State — 7 p.m.

26 at Kansas — 8 p.m.

29 WEST VIRGINIA — 7 p.m.

February

2 BAYLOR — 7 p.m.

5 TCU — 7 p.m.

10 at Oklahoma — 4 p.m.

13 at West Virginia — 6 p.m.

16 KANSAS STATE — 4 p.m.

20 at TCU — 7 p.m.

23 OKLAHOMA — 2 p.m.

27 at Texas Tech — 7 p.m.

March

2 TEXAS — 11 a.m.

4 AT IOWA STATE — 7 p.m.

8-11 #Big 12 Tournament — TBD

* Surf N' Slam Classic, San Diego

# American Airlines Center, Dallas

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