Must a team play its worst to find its best? After Saturday, coach Jennie Baranczyk's Sooner women are about to find out
Perhaps what the Oklahoma women did Saturday afternoon at Lloyd Noble Center is for the best.
All but entirely punting away their first Big 12 regular-season championship since 2009, maybe it’s all worth it, for what better motivation is their than embarrassingly not showing up to face your Red River Rival in front of maybe the best crowd of the season?
Averaging a second-best-in-the-nation 86.7 points, the Sooners threatened to not score half that, eventually walking out 67-45 losers.
Leading the nation at 21.5 assists per outing, they finished with six, and somehow made 22 turnovers feel like 35.
“We’re going to have to look in the mirror on this one,” coach Jennie Baranczyk said moments after it ended, “and really let it re-energize us and really focus on getting better.”
But it’s anybody’s guess.
Big, strong teams bother the Sooners and Texas is one of those teams, yet hardly the only one of them.
Usually, the game lost, it’s the losers who put up one more too-late rally. Not to make the game more interesting, but to make it appear closer than it really was, offering some sort of parting shot to hold onto between the loss and the next contest on the schedule.
OU did none of that against Texas.
Playing to a 17-17 first-quarter deadlock, the Sooners followed with 6, 14 and 8 points the next three quarters. And with a chance to make a game of it late after Madi Williams canned the first bucket of the fourth quarter to make it 51-39, this is what happened instead:
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