NOTEBOOK: Sooners wallop Northwestern State with lights-out shooting
The OU women’s basketball team took the lead in the first possession and never looked back, beating Northwestern (La.) State, 96-35.
Sooners shoot lights out
OU shot well from the field finishing at 57.4 percent shooting compared to just 26.4 percent from Northwestern State. The disparity really showed itself from beyond the arc, however, with the Sooners shooting at a tilt of 65 percent compared to just 22.2 percent from the Lady Demons.
“We shot the ball well,” Coale said. “Things look really pretty when the ball is going in the basket like that.”
“When you make shots, it always make everything a lot easier,” freshman guard Nicole Kornet.
Freshman shines in first-career start
Kornet made her first start in college Thursday night – replacing fellow freshman guard Maddie Manning after Manning tore her ACL on Wednesday – and took advantage of her new role.
Kornet finished with 19 points on 7-of-10 shooting and 4-of-6 from 3-point range.
“It’s not the way you want to start – with Maddie going down – but you take what you get,” Kornet said. “I was excited; I felt good.”
Senior guard Whitney Hand becoming all-everything for the Sooners
Hand is listed as a guard and is a prolific 3-point shooter – she currently sits at fifth on OU’s all-time made 3s list -- but she usually plays a small forward/guard hybrid.
With another guard being inserted into the starting five, first Manning then Kornet, Hand has been asked to play power forward, a position Coale said she is playing well.
“[Hand] has become our all-utility,” Hand said. “She’s very physical, she’s tough in the post, she’s smart, she plays with her feet, anticipates, keeps the ball out of the area where she would have trouble guarding it.”
“I’m good with it,” Hand said. “I’m whatever they need me to be, even if it’s guarding a 6-foot girl. It’s doable.”
Manning dealing with ACL tear better than most
Manning tore her ACL during practice Wednesday. Hand endured the same injury during the 2009-2010 season and was forced to watch her team from the sideline.
Hand said that Manning has already reacted to being relegated to a cheerleader much better than she.
“I couldn’t see (my first game back) because I was crying through the whole thing,” Hand said. “So Maddie did a lot better than me. That first game you are just miserable.”
Coale calls out fans
Coale challenged the fans to come out in force against Marist on Sunday at Lloyd Noble Center.
Coale said that the last time the Sooners played Marist in Poughkeepsie, N.Y., the crowd was dynamic, and the Marist students turned out. The head coach wants to see the same from the Sooner faithful Sunday.
“I want to challenge our fans,” Coale said. “…let’s not have 3,000 people in a 11,000 seat arena. Let’s fill this thing up and show them we can do (just as much as the Marist crowd).”