NORMAN — After No. 2 Duke had finished beating the Oklahoma women 94-85, Sooner coach Sherri Coale lamented that her team didn’t prove to be as mature or seasoned as it should be or needed to be.
Everything went wrong the final 10 minutes of the first half, when a one-point Duke lead became a 46-27 halftime advantage.
“We kicked it off our foot, we threw it directly to them, we sailed it out of bounds,” Coale said. “It was just contagious and that’s when you need the leaders to step in and calm the waters and want the ball … I really thought so many things in that period stem from nobody wanting to score but Vegas. She was the only one shooting the basketball and the only one trying to do anything with it.”
“Vegas,” is Aaryn Ellenberg, who attended high school at Las Vegas Bishop Gorman, and while she may have been the only willing Sooner as Duke began to pull away, she was not very effective, finishing the first half 2 of 7 from the field and 1 of 6 from 3-point land, scoring seven points and committing five turnovers.
At the half, OU had dished only two assists against 15 turnovers. That was a far cry front he second half numbers, when the Sooners outscored the Blue Devils 58-48, dished 10 assists and committed a reasonable six additional turnovers.
Hook, who played a great game but for those 10 bad minutes, finishing with 24 points on 8-of-9 shooting, was under the incorrect assumption that she, too, had committed five first-half turnovers when she had actually committed three. Still, the point she made during the Sooners’ post game session with the media carried no less weight.
“Aaryn and I both had five turnovers at halftime. As two leaders and seniors on the team, that cannot happen. We were the ones that turned it over, that bounced it off our foot and gave it to them and threw it out of bounds,” she said. “It is our responsibility to be the leaders and calm the storm, and as the point guard I did not do a good job in the first half of that at all.”