STILLWATER — Tiffany Bias lamented her early season play, so she decided to calm down and let the game come to her in Oklahoma State’s Big 12 basketball opener.
The result: she took it to Texas, leading the No. 11-ranked Cowgirls to a 67-61 win Thursday night before 3,244 at Gallagher-Iba Arena.
Bias struck for a season-high 23 points to go with six assists and two steals. And she dictated play down the stretch, fully filling her role as senior leader in never coming off the floor.
“Tiffany Bias was probably the difference in the game,” said Texas coach Karen Aston. “She knows the answers that point guards are supposed to know; who to get the ball to at the right time, when to take shots at the right time. She’s a playmaker.”
And she was making key plays against the Longhorns.
About time, too, she said, despite entering the game averaging 12.9 points and a Big 12-best 7.5 assists per game.
“I haven’t played as well as I wanted to play,” Bias said. “I’m wanting to lead my team to victories and just really lead them in the right direction. I just settled down and played tonight.
“I was thinking too much, overthinking the game, and worrying about every little thing. As a point guard you can’t do that. You have to be sound and not let your teammates see you’re frustrated. As a senior point guard, I need to be more focused and more consistent with my play. I think I settled down tonight and just played.”
In a rugged and sometimes ragged game that featured 12 lead changes, OSU showed that it’s learning to close — an issue a year ago — finishing strong to improve to 12-0 overall and 1-0 in the Big 12. The Longhorns fell to 9-4 and 0-1.