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OU Women's Hoops Set For Top 25 Showdown In Austin

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TUESDAY'S GAME BASICS

Two of the top three teams in the Big 12 standings square off Tuesday night in Austin, Texas as the No. 20/25 Sooners (14-4, 5-1 Big 12) take on No. 12/17 (12-4, 6-0 Big 12) Texas at the Erwin Center. Tip-off is set for 6 p.m. CT as the Sooners look to snap a three-game losing skid to the Longhorns. OU enters the matchup ranked second in the Big 12 with 77.0 points per game in league play, while Texas is holding conference foes to just 53.5 points a contest. The Longhorns lead the series in Austin, 15-8.

FIVE THINGS TO KNOW

• Oklahoma and Texas meet for the 53rd time on Tuesday with the Longhorns leading the all-time series, 28-24. The series has been dominated by the home team recently with the host winning seven straight regular-season meetings. Last year, the teams split the season series with UT taking the win in Austin, 83-76, while OU rolled past the Longhorns, 74-56, in Norman (box scores/cumulative stats from last year's two meetings are on page 17 of these notes).

• Since the formation of the Big 12 Conference, the series is tied, 23-23, between Oklahoma and Texas. The teams have met eight times over the last three seasons including twice in the Big 12 Tournament. The Sooners are looking for their first win in Austin since defeating the Longhorns, 78-70, on Jan. 5, 2013.

• The Sooners are not short one experience this season. Entering Tuesday's game, OU's roster boasts 341 career starts among 10 players who have made least one career appearance in the Sooners' starting five. The foursome of Gioya Carter, Peyton Little, Maddie Manning and Gabbi Ortiz have combined to make 276 starts between them. OU's bench is laden with experience, including T'ona Edwards and Vionise Pierre-Louis who have played in 114 and 82 career games, respectively.

• OU has held its opponent to season lows in scoring in back-to-back games (Iowa State, 57, and Texas Tech, 45). In Big 12 play, the Sooners are limiting teams to 65.2 points and a .366 shooting percentage (ranks third in the Big 12 in both categories).

• Tuesday's matchup with Texas marks OU’s third meeting with a top-25 opponent this year. The Sooners are 1-2 against ranked opponents so far this season. OU topped Kansas State, 85-80, on Jan. 4 in overtime to secure its first ranked win during the 2016-17 season. A victory Tuesday would mark the Sooners’ first road win over a top-25 foe since defeating No. 21 Iowa State, 75-54, in Ames on Jan. 21, 2014.

GAME 18 RECAP: TEXAS TECH

• Sparked by a stout defensive performance, the No. 22/25 Oklahoma picked up its fifth Big 12 victory of the season as it rolled past Texas Tech, 66-45, on Saturday afternoon inside Lloyd Noble Center.

• The Sooners limited the Lady Raiders to a season-low point total on just 19-of-64 shooting from the field (29.7 percent), including a 3-of-15 mark from 3-point range (20 percent). OU made 27 of its 64 shots (42.2 percent) and outrebounded Texas Tech, 49-39.

• Three Sooners scored in double figures in the contest, paced by redshirt senior Peyton Little, whose 18 points were a game high. Little also grabbed five rebounds and tallied two assists, tied a career high with two blocks and a steal for the home team.

• Junior Vionise Pierre-Louis logged her sixth double-double of the season with 10 points and 11 rebounds, while junior Gabbi Ortiz also contributed 10 points and added five rebounds along with an assist. Ortiz has now scored in double figures in four straight games for the Sooners. The win marked OU's 12th straight victory over Texas Tech, its third-longest winning streak against a Big 12 opponent in program history.

PREVIEWING TEXAS

• Texas, who is off to best start in the Big 12 era, enters Tuesday night's top-25 matchup with a 12-4 record and 6-0 mark in conference play. The Longhorns are coming off a 73-63 victory over then No. 18 West Virginia in Morgantown on Saturday. UT is averaging 73.4 points a contest (fifth in Big 12) on .451 field goal shooting (third), .340 3-point shooting (sixth) and .652 (ninth) free throw shooting The Longhorns lead the Big 12 and rank in the top-five nationally in rebounding margin (fifth; +12.3).

• Junior guard Brooke McCarty leads the Longhorns and ranks 12th in the Big 12 averaging 13.6 points per game. McCarty ranks sixth in the league in 3-point shooting (.425) and eighth in assists per game (3.4). Junior guard Ariel Atkins is second on the team with 12.6 points per game and is third in the Big 12 with 2.1 steals a contest.

• Freshman forward Joyner Holmes is second among Big 12 freshmen with 11.1 points per game this season. Senior center Kelsey Lang averages a near double-double with 9.6 points and 9.1 rebounds per game.

• Texas head coach Karen Aston is 101-50 in her five seasons with the Longhorns. Aston served as an assistant coach at Texas from 1998-2006 under former head coach Jody Conradt. Aston is 202-113 in her 10 years as a head coach with previous stops at Charlotte and North Texas.

LOCKDOWN

• OU's defense has left its mark on the opposing team over the last two games. The Sooners have held their opponents to just 51.0 points and a .317 shooting percentage. OU limited both Iowa State (57) and Texas Tech (45) to season-low point totals.

• OU has already matched its block total from last season with 112 rejections in 2016-17. The 112 blocked shot total already ranks as the 10th-most in school history. Nancy Mulkey leads all Big 12 freshman with 40 blocks this year (2.2 bpg), while Vionise Pierre-Louis is eighth in the conference with 1.7 blocks a game.

• The Sooners also lead the Big 12 Conference with 10.4 steals per game and is second in the league with a +3.0 turnover margin. OU nearly set a school record with 27 steals on Dec. 21 against Portland State. Maddie Manning leads the conference with 2.5 steals per game, while Peyton Little is tied for with 1.9 swipes a contest.

• Against Big 12 teams, OU is third in the league in scoring defense (65.2 ppg) and field goal percentage defense (.366).

QUICK HITS

• The Sooners are 10-0 this season and have won 31 straight games win posting a higher shooting percentage than their opponent. OU has also earned 26 consecutive victories (9-0 in 2016-17) when the Sooners win the rebounding and turnover battle against their competition.

• OU held Iowa State to a season-low 57 points in Ames. The Sooners limited the Cyclones to just 1-of-11 from 3-point range in the second half and held Iowa State, the nation's second-best free throw shooting team to just 9-of-12 from the charity stripe. The Sooners followed that performance up on Saturday by limiting Texas Tech to a season-low 45 points on a .297 shooting percentage.

• Against Texas Tech, the Sooners pulled down 39 defensive rebounds - the most by an OU team against a Big 12 opponent in the Coale era. Oklahoma also limited the Lady Raiders to .297 shooting percentage, the fourth time this year the Sooners have held their opponent to a shooting percentage below .300.

• The Sooners have recorded 112 blocks - matching its season total from last year in just 18 games. OU's block total is already tied for 10th in single-season history.

• OU's 18 points, six made field goals and .857 field goal percentage in overtime against Kansas State all set Coale era records. The win marked OU's first OT victory over a top-25 opponent since defeating Notre Dame in the NCAA Tournament on March 28, 2010, in the Sweet 16.

• Nancy Mulkey earned Big 12 and USBWA National Freshman of the Week Awards on Jan. 2 with 13 blocked shots in OU’s first two leagues games, while averaging 11.0 points and 7.0 rebounds per game. In her first career start at Kansas, Mulkey nearly finished with a triple-double, picking up career highs of 14 points, nine rebounds and seven blocks against the Jayhawks. She followed her performance by recording a team-high six blocks in against TCU in 16 minutes. Mulkey finished 4-of-5 from the field and scored eight points versus the Horned Frogs

• Maddie Manning's 10 steals against Portland State on Dec. 21 rank as the most by a Division I player in a single game this season and the most by an OU player in one game since 1996.

• The Sooners have been ranked in the AP Poll for 32 consecutive weeks (tied for the 10th-longest active streak in the country). OU has been ranked in the AP poll 252 times under Sherri Coale.

UP NEXT

Bedlam returns to Norman on Sunday as the Sooners host Oklahoma State at 2 p.m. CT. The game will air live on Fox Sports Oklahoma. OU is 32-12 all-time against the Cowgirls in Norman.

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