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Women's Hoops Preview: Phillips 66 Big 12 Championship First Round

Courtesy of Texassports.com

#8 seed TEXAS (18-12, 8-10 Big 12) vs. #9 seed Texas Tech (18-12, 6-12 Big 12) 

Phillips 66 Big 12 Championship First Round
Wednesday, March 7, 2012 • 5 p.m. Central
Municipal Auditorium (9,308) • Kansas City, Mo. 

GAME DAY QUICK FACTS
TELEVISION: The game will be televised in Kansas City markets by Metro Sports (check TexasSports.com for up-to-date broadcast information). Brenda VanLengen (pxp) and Cindy Stein (analyst) will call the action.
RADIO: KVET-AM 1300 “The Zone” will broadcast Wednesday’s game against Texas Tech. Craig Way (pxp) and Carol Ross (analyst) will handle the call.  
SERIES: Texas, 61-26. Last meeting: Texas 63-54 (Feb. 15, 2012; Austin, Texas).
TEXAS IN THE BIG 12 CHAMPIONSHIP: Texas is 18-14 (.653) all-time in league tournament games.

NOTABLES
• Hot Streak ... Texas enters the Big 12 Championship as one of the hottest teams in the nation while riding a three-game winning streak into the postseason. With a 5-10 record entering the final 10 games of the season, Texas finished by beating Oklahoma by 25 points, Missouri by 13 and A&M by 15. The Longhorns are averaging a +17.7 margin of victory in their three-game win streak.

• “Vonne-sanity” ... Senior guard Yvonne Anderson connected on 9-of-17 shots from the field, 6-of-8 from the foul line and scored a career-high 25 points with nine assists in Texas’ 79-64 regular-season finale win over Texas A&M.

• Fussell at the Line ... Sophomore guard Chassidy Fussell’s 90.5 percent (86-of-95) from the free-throw line is second-best among all NCAA Division I players this season (thru March 2). She has made 24 consecutive baskets from the charity stripe.

• Eighth-seed History ...  UT enters the Phillips 66 Big 12 Women’s Basketball Championship as the No. 8 seed for the second time in school history.  The Longhorns sport a 0-1 record when playing as the eighth seed, and have not been the No. 5 seed since the 2006 Big 12 Championship. Texas is 2-1 when playing the No. 9 seed and 3-1 against Texas Tech in the conference tourney. 

Series vs. Texas Tech
Wednesday’s contest marks the 88th meeting between Texas and Texas Tech. Texas holds a 61-26 advantage in the all-time series that began on Jan. 15, 1977 and is the longest-running series in school history. The Longhorns hold a 13-4 edge over the Lady Raiders when the teams meet on a neutral court, including a 3-1 mark when meeting their instate rivals in the Big 12 Championship. 

Series Quick Facts
Overall Series Record - Texas, 61-26
Goestenkors all-time vs. Texas Tech - 10-3
Most UT points - 98 (Dec. 9, 1981)
Most TTU points - 96 (Feb. 5, 1997)
Fewest UT points - 40 (Jan. 28, 1995)
Fewest TTU points - 43 (twice)
Largest UT margin - 48 (96-48; Feb. 17, 1979)
Largest TTU margin - 44 (84-40; Jan. 28, 1995)
In overtime - Texas, 2-1  

Flashback: vs. Texas Tech (Feb. 15, 2012)
Following Ashleigh Fontenette’s second double-double of the season and a game-high 20 points from Chassidy Fussell, the Texas Women’s Basketball team defeated Texas Tech, 63-54, at the Frank Erwin Center. The game featured five lead changes and seven ties, but Fussell’s 3-pointer with 4:15 left to play gave the Longhorns the lead for good. As a team, the Longhorns shot 55 percent in the second half, and UT needed contributions from the entire roster to overcome the Lady Raiders, who led by as many as seven. Both Fontenette and Fussell played the entire 40 minutes. In addition, senior guard Yvonne Anderson scored six of her nine points in the final five minutes. Anderson also dished out a game-high seven assists. Tech shot just 32 percent for the game, and the Lady Raiders’ 16 turnovers contributed to 15 fast-break points for UT. 

RPI Rundown
Per the NCAA Women’s Basketball RPI Ranking (thru Feb. 27), the Longhorns have not lost to any team with an RPI less than 60 this season. Texas’ key wins come against No. 6 Texas A&M, No. 18 Oklahoma, No. 26 Cal and No. 49 Virginia. The Longhorns check in at No. 55 in the latest rankings. 

Last Time Out: vs. #17/13 Texas A&M (March 4, 2012) 
Senior Yvonne Anderson scored a career-high 25 points and Texas closed out the regular season with a convincing 79-64 victory over Texas A&M Sunday at the Erwin Center. Texas played one of its best games on Senior Day. Senior guard Ashleigh Fontenette scored 11 points and center Ashley Gayle had 4 points and 5 rebounds. Texas led 39-34 at halftime but extended its lead behind Anderson, who hit 9 of her 17 shots from the field. Her previous career high was 24 points in a game against A&M last season. Texas coach Gail Goestenkors and A&M coach Gary Blair said the victory likely ensures the Longhorns an at-large berth in the NCAA Tournament. Nneka Enemkpali had a career-high 14 rebounds, seven on the offensive glass, for the Longhorns. A&M had three players score 13 points: Adaora Elonu, Kelsey Bone and Sydney Carter. 

When Some, Lose Some 
In its eight Big 12 Conference wins, Texas piled up 73.2 ppg and connected on 44.0 percent from the field (222-504). The Longhorns averaged just 59.1 ppg in their 10 league losses and hit only 34.9 percent from the field (218-624).

Senior Class Salute
With the postseason looming, any game could mark the final collegiate contest for senior captains Yvonne Anderson, Ashleigh Fontenette and Ashley Gayle. During the last four seasons, the Horns sport a 80-49 (.620) record entering Wednesday’s contest against Texas Tech. The trio was Gail Goestenkors’ first recruiting class on the Forty Acres. 

Beast on the Boards
Freshman forward Nneka Enemkpali pulled down a game-high 14 rebounds in Texas’ win over Texas A&M (March 4). Her single-game performance on the boards was the best by any Texas player this season. 

Second-half Fury Vs. Tech
Texas took control of the momentum in the second half against Tech (Feb. 15), repeating it’s winning formula from the game before against Oklahoma State (Feb. 11). Against the Cowgirls, the Longhorns started the final half by hitting six of their first seven shots to take a 17-point lead. OSU pulled within nine points until UT went on an 8-2 run to maintain control of the game. Trailing 49-45 against Tech with 5:19 remaining, the Longhorns went on a 10-0 run to take a 55-49 lead. Chassidy Fussell’s 3-pointer during that surge gave the Longhorns the lead for good. 

Bass Returns After Midseason Injury
Sophomore guard Chelsea Bass returned to Texas’ active roster in its loss at Kansas State (Feb. 18). The sophomore guard missed five straight games after injuring her left ankle in practice on Jan. 31. Since returning to play, Bass is averaging 11.0 ppg on 19-of-36 shooting (52.8 percent) from the field and playing 21.2 minutes pg. She put up a season-high 18 points at Missouri (Feb. 28). 

Fussell En Fuego
Sophomore guard Chassidy Fussell hit a career-best five three-point field goals against Kansas State (Feb. 1) and Texas A&M (March 4). She had previously connected on four treys in nine games including twice this season against Virginia and Iowa State.

 

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