Aggies Best Sooners in Battle of Unbeatens

NORMAN, Okla. — The Sooners' bid for a massive comeback victory fell just short, as Texas A&M forward Danielle Adams did what OU point guard Danielle Robinson couldn't—she hit a pair of free throws after Robinson missed the front end of a late 1-and-1—and the Aggies held on for an 80-78 victory in a thriller Wednesday night at LNC.

"I want the ball in my hand and I know my teammates trust me enough to give it to me at the end of the game," Robinson said. "They trust me to make the free throw, so that's what it came down to."

The All-American had one more chance even after Adams connected on those two free throws, but once again, her effort fell short, as Adams blocked her attempt at the buzzer.

"I have had the opportunity to take the last shot many times, and I knew that changing sides of the floor would take them off balance," Robinson said. "I think I got a good look. It just didn't go in."

And with that, OU's valiant effort to completely overcome a 17-point deficit for victory was doused out.

The Sooners trailed by that much at the 2:52 mark of the first half, but they scored five of the final six points from then until intermission and used a 9-0 run out of the gates of the second half to close within four at 47-43.

Adams, who scored 21 points in the first half, then did more of the same over the next few minutes, helping to extend the Aggies' lead back to double digits.

But that's when Robinson took over.

She single-handedly brought the Sooners back into the game, scoring 12 points in 3:26 to trim an 11-point margin to just one.

"I think we just played basketball, a simple thing we do every day," Robinson said of the change in the second half that led to that spurt.

Forward Carlee Roethlisberger finally tied things up at 65 moments later with 7:43 remaining when she hit a three from the right corner, the first time since the 10-minute mark of the first half that the Sooners weren't playing from behind.

OU then grabbed its first lead since midway through the first half when guard Whitney Hand drained a three to make it 71-69.

Down the stretch, though, the Aggies caught the breaks, beneficiaries of a couple tight calls and good free throw shooting, and they were able to stave off a major Sooner rally that featured a back-and-forth finish.

"I thought we did some good things," said OU head coach Sherri Coale. "I loved our grit and our toughness, the way we fought back and the way we executed in the face of pressure. We just really battled. We cut into the rebounding margin even though we were undersized. We just put ourselves in the position to win. I think it speaks volumes about where our potential lies."

In fact, the Sooners trailed 22-12 in the rebounding column after the first half and finished down just five after owning a 17-12 advantage of their own in the final 20 minutes.

They committed only seven turnovers after having 11 in the opening frame.

And they shot 53.3 percent in the final 20 minutes, although 44.4 percent in the first half isn't anything to critique too hard.

Robinson led all scorers and three Sooners in double figures with 33 points.

Hand had 17, and guard Aaryn Ellenberg added 13.

Adams finished with 31 for A&M, while forward Tyra White had 14 and point guard Sydney Carter managed 12.

The loss really damages OU's chances to win the Big 12 regular season title and gives A&M a leg up, but with more than half the conference schedule to be played, it's still anyone's to win.

A&M, at 6-0, is now 1/2 game ahead of Baylor (5-0) and a game up on the Sooners (5-1).

OU will next take the court in Bedlam at 12 p.m. Saturday in Stillwater.

Click here for the postgame press conference

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