Women's Basketball shoots lights out in 93-83 win over Kansas
Feb. 20, 2013
AUSTIN, Texas -- The Texas Women's Basketball team shot a season-best 64.6% from the field in a 93-83 victory over the Kansas Jayhawks Wednesday night at the Frank Erwin Center.
Junior Chassidy Fussell recorded a team-high 26 points on 10-of-12 shooting, including 4-of-5 from beyond the arc. Freshman Imani McGee-Stafford recorded her 11th double-double of the season with 18 points and 13 rebounds.
The Longhorns jumped out to a blistering pace, hitting their first 10 shots from the field to take a 20-10 lead just six minutes into the game. The hot shooting continued as UT made 15 of the first 19 shots over the first 12 minutes to stretch the lead to 34-21.
Fussell continued her feverish scoring streak following a 27-point output at Texas Tech on Sunday, converting 7-of-8 shots in the first half for 16 points.
Kansas kept the game close, led by seniors Angel Goodrich and Carolyn Davis. Goodrich had 15 in the opening half, including three shots from long-distance, but trailed 47-35 following the first period.
Texas' 47 points were it's most in any half in Big 12 play this season. The Longhorns finished the opening frame with six different players scoring at least four points, led by Fussell's 16 and sophomore forward Nneka Enemkpali's 11.
Kansas scored the first four points of the second half to cut the lead to eight before Fussell fired back with her third three-pointer of the game to kick-start a 7-0 Texas run to push the lead back to 15. A fast-break layup by Fussell from freshman point guard Celina Rodrigo gave Texas its biggest lead in league play this season at 61-41 with 13:53 remaining.
Kansas would not go away, led by Davis and Goodrich. Goodrich matched a career-high 31 points. Davis and Goodrich combined for 54 points. Kansas only turned the ball over five times in the second half, shooting 47.4% from the field to keep the game within reach.
The Jayhawks cut the lead to six points with 1:14 remaining when McGee-Stafford grabbed a crucial offensive rebound on a Rodrigo missed free throw. An ensuing Kansas foul led to two free throws by McGee-Stafford to push the lead back to eight at the 1:06 mark. Goodrich would score one more three-pointer, but Texas shot 9-of-10 from the free throw line down the stretch to keep the lead.
Texas next plays on Saturday, Feb. 23 in Waco against No. 1/1 Baylor at noon. The game will be broadcast regionally on Fox Sports Southwest.
-Texas' 93 points were the most since scoring a season-high 94 against Central Connecticut State on Nov. 24, 2012 ... 93 points are the most scored by a team in a Big game this season.
-Texas' three leading scorers in Nneka Enemkpali, Chassidy Fussell and Imani McGee-Stafford posted their highest combined point total in Big 12 play with 54 and matched their collective season high overall.
-The Longhorns had five players in double figures (Davenport, Enemkpali, Fussell, McGee-Stafford and Sanders) for the first time since Nov. 20, 2012 at home against Jackson State.
-The Longhorns' 47 first-half points were the most they have scored in any half in conference play this season
-UT's 20-point lead at two occasions in the second half is the largest advantage the Longhorns have carried in a Big 12 game this season.
-Texas' sank 27 free throws, matching a season-high set against St. John's in the 2012-13 opener, on a season-high 39 attempts.
Head Coach Karen Aston
Opening Statement: This was an overall terrific team performance tonight. I thought for the second game in a row that we got out of the gates quickly. We executed very well early in the game. That gets our confidence going and I thought that our team, instead of playing in waves, kept their composure when they made a run. They did a great job of staying consistent throughout the game. It was the most consistent performance we have had.
On Chassidy Fussell's performance: I think it was an extension of the game in Lubbock. I don't want to say she's been in a shooting slump, because part of Chassidy's lack of production was the way everyone has been keying on her. Second of all, she was getting herself back into a groove after all of the adversity that she went through in the stretch of a month. She has been in the gym with Travis Mays a lot. I think you can see that it's paying off some. I also think that seeing the ball going through the net a lot in Lubbock helped. Shooters are like that. Seeing the ball when it starts going in, they think they can make anything. She was definitely in a terrific groove tonight.
On five players in double figures: This is definitely our best team performance. Even though we've had some other wins, I would agree with Nneka in a sense that I think everybody feels like they contributed something to get this win. Everybody got involved offensively, which is a terrific thing for us because teams have been keying in on certain players and not guarding others. I think that is attributed to the players getting into the gym and taking that personally. They've done a really good job. This was great team win and a really good team performance.
Junior G Chassidy Fussell
On best performance this season: I was just feeling it tonight. My teammates were setting great screens and I was coming off them and hitting shots.
On the play she got hurt: I got an elbow to the nose, again. It hurts really badly.
Sophomore F Nneka Enemkpali
On Chassidy Fussell's performance: She was on fire. It seemed like everything and anything she touched was going in. It was good because it was able to release pressure on the outside. We had five people in double figures and that shows that we played unselfishly and we shared the ball. This was the outcome we got.
On starting shooting 10-for-10 as a team: I didn't know we were 10-for-10. We talked about opening up the game with high energy and we really wanted to go out there and attack them before they could attack us. I think we did a good job.
Freshman C Imani McGee-Stafford
On discussion of previous game against Kansas: That game does not exist anymore. It's been erased. Everyone remembers it and remembers the horrible feeling we had. We set a lot of bad records in that game. In the back of our heads we were trying to make sure that didn't happen again. Personally, I remember what we did wrong in that game and I was trying to make sure I didn't repeat myself.
On building confidence: I think it's great because we're playing together. This isn't just confidence for the people sitting here at the podium. It's also a big confidence booster for our teammates because we all were in double digits. The bench players know that they can come off the bench and give something no matter how many minutes they play. Everybody came in and did something great. It's a team confidence builder, not just individual.
Kansas Head Coach Bonnie Hendrickson
Opening Statement: Give credit to Texas. I know it's been a difficult year for them and they came in and played with great energy. We didn't match their energy. It doesn't matter who you play or where you play, but it's how you play and we certainly didn't get it done.
On Texas' hot start: I didn't think we were ready from the tip. We did that the other night against TCU. We certainly didn't come out with a sense of urgency that you need to play in this league on the road.
On Chassidy Fussell's performance: She's a tremendous one-on-one player. She reads screens really well. She can get her shot off in a small space and we didn't get into her to force penetration enough. She would lean back and get off her left foot and knock it down. She hit some tough ones and then got loose, found a rhythm, and got into the zone.
On the earlier matchup this season: We recognize that without [Chassidy] Fussell and Nneka [Enemkpali], they're a different team. If you took our two leading scorers off, we would be different as well. Our kids know that and have enough respect for those two scorers. [The first game] wasn't going to be a factor. What we took pride in from that game was how hard we played and how we turned them over and rebounded. We didn't do those things [tonight].
Senior G Angel Goodrich
On Texas' start to the game: We came out flat and you can't do that in this league. I'm not sure why we came out flat because we understand how tough this league is. It's probably one of the best leagues in the country and we just have to come out ready to play and we didn't do that tonight.
On whether any Texas players stood out tonight: No, we know what kind of team they are. We don't come out thinking anyone's not good, because this is the Big 12 and everyone's good in this league.