Women's Basketball wins OT thriller, 71-70, over Kansas State Sunday
AUSTIN, Texas -- Senior forward Daria Mieloszynska and freshman guard Erika Arriaran combined to score eight of Texas' nine points in overtime, and Mieloszynska also had five rebounds in the five-minute OT, as Texas posted a thrilling 71-70 victory over Kansas State Sunday afternoon in Big 12 women's basketball action. Mieloszynska finished with her first career double-double, collecting 10 points and a career-high 10 rebounds.
The victory also moved Texas head coach and Hall of Famer Jody Conradt into a tie for No. 2 in all-time collegiate basketball victories (men's or women's) with Dean Smith. Both Conradt and Smith have 879 career victories. Conradt's overall record in this her 37th year overall stands at 879-284. Tennessee's Pat Summit is first in all-time wins with 900.
The last five games in the Texas-KSU series have been decided by a total of 12 points.
The win was UT's fourth in a row, as the Longhorns (10-6 overall) move into a tie for second-place in the Big 12 standings with a 4-2 mark. KSU, which relied on a career and game-high 26 points from junior forward Claire Coggins (6-10 in 3-pointers) and 18 from freshman post JoAnn Hamlin, falls to 13-4 overall and to 3-3 in the Big 12. The win also was Texas' 30th consecutive win at home against a Big 12 opponent, which is the longest such current streak in the conference.
Texas played the entire overtime without the services of All-America junior forward Tiffany Jackson. Jackson, who led the Longhorns with team-highs of 23 points, 14 rebounds and three steals (logging her fourth double-double in a row), had fouled out with seven seconds left in regulation. Arriaran finished with 11 points, while freshman post Aubry Cook added 10 and seven rebounds.
In overtime, Texas led 69-68 with 1:21 to play. The Wildcats missed a jumper on their next trip down the court, with Mieloszynska grabbing the defensive rebound. Mieloszynska then missed a 3-point attempt, got her own rebound, missed a short jumper, got her own rebound a second time and was fouled. She then sank the second of two free throws to push UT up by 70-68 with 28 ticks on the clock.
Kansas State had a chance to tie the game but Gipson was called for an offensive foul in the paint, turning the ball over to Texas. The Wildcats then fouled UT senior Tamra Cobbins who made the second of two free throws for the 71-68 edge with seven seconds left. On the game's final possession, the Texas defense clamped down on the perimeter, forcing the ball inside the 3-point line where Hamlin hit a 12-foot jumper for the final 71-70 score.
The score was knotted at 62-62 after regulation. In overtime, the Wildcats scored first (on a Hamlin jumper) before Arriaran answered with a baseline jumper to tie it at 64-64 with 3:42 to go. Coggins scored her final points of the game on a short jumper before Arriaran put UT up by one, 67-66, on a long 3-pointer from the right baseline with 2:33 left.
Kansas State regained the lead on a Hamlin jumper 22 seconds later (68-67) and UT missed a jumper on its next possession. On KSU's trip down the floor, however, Longhorn senior point guard Nina Norman stripped Twiggy McIntyre and UT took the lead for good on a Mieloszynska turnaround jumper in the paint for the 69-68 UT edge with 1:21 to go.
In the OT, Texas went 3-for-10 from the field (one 3-pointer) and two-for-four in free throws, while KSU was four-for-seven from the floor and did not attempt a free throw. Texas held a 9-3 edge in rebounding in the five-minute extra period. Texas did not turn the ball over in OT, while KSU had two turnovers.
In the final minutes of regulation, KSU had taken the the lead, 62-60, on a Marlies Gipson driving layup with 1:07 to go. On UT's next possession, the Horns had four shots at the basket down low before Jackson grabbed the rebound and had a putback to tie the game at 62-62 with 38 seconds left on the clock.
On KSU's next possession, Coggins missed a runner and on the rebound attempt, Jackson picked up her fifth foul with 7.5 seconds left, fouling freshman guard Shalee Lehning on the rebound attempt. That sent Lehning to the line. A delay ensued (officials reviewed the shot clock situation, and UT called a timeout) before Lehning went to the line and missed both free throws. A tie-up on the rebound attempt gave KSU the ball back with 4.8 seconds to play. Coggins missed a short jumper with time expiring to send the game into overtime.
In the second half, KSU led 38-34 with 16:50 to go before the Longhorns went on a 13-3 run, highlighted by six points from Jackson and five by Norman, as UT led 47-41 with 11:40 remaining. In the run, a Mieloszynska putback tied the game at 38-38, and after a KSU blocked shot, Mieloszyska then gave Texas the lead for the first time since midway through the first half when she scored on a 12-foot jumper to make it 40-38 with 14:17 left.
The two squad traded baskets before Norman scored four straight on a pullup jumper and driving layup to give UT the 47-41 lead with 11:42 remaining.
That would be UT's biggest lead for the rest of the game. Down the stretch, there would be three lead changes and three ties. KSU went up by as many as five (52-47) on two McIntyre free throws with 8:16 to go, but Texas battled back with another big run, this time out-scoring the `Cats 13-4 in the next 4:58 as an Arriaran jumper gave UT a four-point, 60-56 edge with 3:18 to go. KSU tied it at 60-all with a four straight free throws before Gipson hit her layup for the 62-60 Wildcat lead - their last of the contest.
The first half saw the Wildcats go 8-for-16 from 3-point range, enabling KSU to take a 34-27 lead into intermission. Coggins led the way with 17 points, scoring 15 of them from 3-point territory as she was 5-7 in treys in the first half. The Longhorns shot just 36 percent in the half (11-31), while KSU hit 39 percent of its shots (11-28). Texas was 0-4 from 3-point range in the half, and dominated on the boards (22-17) and in points in the paint (a 14-6 margin).
For the game, the Longhorns made 36.3 percent of their shots, hitting 29 of 80, while the Wildcats hit 36 percent of their shots (22-62). Texas held a commanding edge in rebounding, 55-39. Both team turned the ball over 14 times, while Texas had 10 steals to KSU's 11. The Wildcats connected on 9 of 21 treys (43 percent), making just one in the final half. UT went 2-for-12 from 3-point range.
The Longhorns return to action on Wednesday, Jan. 25, traveling to Norman, Oklahoma for a 7 p.m. against No. 17/16 Oklahoma. The Sooners (15-4) are first in the Big 12 standings with a 5-0 record. OU is the sixth ranked team that Texas will face. The game will be televised on College Sports TV (CSTV) and broadcast via the radio on KVET 1300 AM in Central Texas and via the internet (on subscription-based Yahoo!Sports).
This team continues to mature. When you get 55 rebounds you are either working hard or missing a lot of shots. It was a little of both tonight. Still, it came down to a one-point difference. I thought Daria's (Mieloszynska) play in the second half and into overtime was huge. I was really relieved to see Erika (Arriaran) shoot a few times in overtime! We had to have everyone contribute, and they did.
I thought we played really well toward the end of regulation and into overtime. Defensively, we were pretty determined. How we would get our points in overtime, however, was the question. We didn't really have a huge plan - we told the players just to be aggressive and go at it. That was a better plan than to set up plays. It was all about defense.
Now, we will enjoy this game for tonight, and get back to work tomorrow for Oklahoma (Wednesday, Jan. 25). We will go there and try and fight and show the mental toughness that we did today.
On how big the performance was by Daria Mieloszynska, especially in overtime: Daria is one of the most competitive players we have. She is getting a lot of confidence. We wanted her around the basket at the end. She played both outside and in the post during the game, and was playing in the post in OT and she did a great job. Daria is unique in regard to how much she can get around the ball. She is big part of what we are doing now.
On tying Dean Smith for No. 2 in all-time collegiate basketball wins with the victory over K-State: Honestly, I've said this again and again. It's about so many terrific players and terrific people who have been a part of this program. I am so lucky to represent a wonderful University and lucky to coach so many great individuals who are the real part of this. This team has fought so hard lately, and I am happy for them that we've kept our position in the Big 12 with our recent wins.
Individual goals and achievements in a team sport are always secondary to what the team accomplishes. To see where they [the Texas players] are now and how much they've matured is what is significant. What means a lot to me about all this was to see what the players showed me in the locker room after the game [about the win]. That was our private moment and I appreciate it.
When I took this job at Texas, there were no female role models in the game. One of my first purchases was to send five dollars to Dean Smith and get a copy of his run and jump defense. That was the backbone for what we did defensively for a long time. I have a great deal of respect and admiration for what he's done for our game. Again, there were not a lot of women coaching when I started, and we had role models like Dean Smith. And, no one was more successful than Dean Smith.
Senior F Daria Mieloszynska
I think we can always count on Tiffany and Nina to play big. Others have to step in and help out. The other teams will double- and triple-team Tiffany. We all have to realize that we have to be ready and support each other out there. That's what I always try and do.
Junior F Tiffany Jackson
As far as Coach Conradt tying Dean Smith today ... I am honored to play for a legend like Coach and appreciate all the things she's contributed to women's basketball. I am really excited for her. We all are. She deserves this.
Freshman G Erika Arriaran
It was a huge factor without Tiffany out there in overtime. She is our core player. She brings incredible energy, and we love playing with her and with her energy. I know when she fouled out she came to all the players. She personally told me we have to step up, it's our time, let's get a win and get ready for Oklahoma. It was hard in overtime. We really wanted to step up for Coach and her.
Kansas State Coach Deb Patterson
How surprised was she that Texas was able to score without Jackson in overtime: I cannot say I was surprised. It was tightly contested all game long. Remember, we lost Coggins the last two minutes [of overtime], too. Regardless of who was on the floor, you knew both teams were going to battle every second out there. That's a very talented basketball team we were lined up against. Quite frankly, it did not surprise me at all. What an incredible floor game Jackson did have today. It was good to have someone with that prescence out of the game, but you know others have been stepping up and making big plays. It never comes down to one play, one set of free throws.