One more to go till San Antonio

Oklahoma players celebrate after beating Texas Tech 72-62 in an NCAA West regional game Saturday, March 23, 2002, in Boise, Idaho. Oklahoma will play Colorado at 8:30 p.m. on Monday with the winner advancing to the Final Four in San Antonio.

This is starting to become a trend for both the men and women's basketball teams at the University of Oklahoma. If you want to advance in the NCAA Tournament, you are going to have to go against a member of your own Big 12 Conference. The men made it to Atlanta by disposing of Missouri in the Elite 8. The women, after defeating Big 12 mate Texas Tech, 72-62, on Saturday night, must get by another Big 12 foe, Colorado, for the right to head to San Antonio. Tip-off tonight is scheduled for 8:30.

OU and Colorado have already met once this season. The Sooners came out on top on January 2, 78-67. Rosalind Ross was phenomenal on that January night, going for 25 points on 10-16 shooting from the field. Oklahoma needed all of that, considering the Buffaloes held OU All-American Stacey Dales to only six points.

Colorado features an all-everything player much like OU's Dales. Mandy Nightingale does everything and more for the Buffs. She leads the team in points, assists, steals and free throw percentage. Oklahoma knows that Nightingale will most likely get her points in one way or another. The key for OU is to shut down the 3-point shooting of Jenny Roulier, who leads the team with 66 treys on the season. Combined, Colorado has converted 172 trifectas on the season, demolishing the old record of 154. If OU is able to get a hand in the face of their assassins, then it could be a long night for the Buffs.

Colorado is an excellent team, but they will run into a buzzsaw tonight. Oklahoma is on a mission, and they are more than ready to join the Sooner men in the Final Four. Look for the Sooner Triumvirate of Caufield, Dales and Hill to dominate this game with a barrage of drives and accurate three-point shooting. Colorado will hang with the Sooners early, but these ladies are much too resilient for the Buffs. The Sooners will make it to the Final Four for the first time with a ticket stamped for San Antonio.

Oklahoma 71
Colorado 60

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