Paris twins shine in exhibition win

Oklaoma's freshmen duo of Courtney (above left) and Ashley (above right) Paris combined for 45 points and 41 rebounds in the Sooners' 107-44 exhibition win over Oklahoma Christian Thursday night in Norman.

The Paris twins, Courtney and Ashley, didn't waste any time making their presence felt posting incredible double-doubles as the Sooners overwhelmed Oklahoma Christian 107-44 Thursday night in Norman.

Oklahoma Christian is one of the most talented teams in NAIA women's basketball, but they didn't have the size or quickness to keep up with the 25th-ranked Sooners.

"We out-manned them tonight and had more size and strength, and that's the difference in Division I basketball and NAIA basketball," said OU head coach Sherri Coale, whose Sooners improve to 13-0 in exhibition play since 2000. "Oklahoma Christian is a very good basketball team, and they are going to win a bunch of games and maybe even their conference.

"Our post game really dominated tonight, and I was really pleased with all three of our freshmen. They didn't play like freshmen at all."

Courtney started and Ashley was the first girl off the bench, and both were unstoppable. Courtney finished with 25 points and 18 rebounds, while Ashley was just as impressive with 20 point and 23 rebounds. Ashley would have finished with 30 points if she wasn't nervous early leaving several short shots short.

"We are quite different (than last year) when these guys (Courtney and Ashley Paris) are getting a rebound a minute," said Coale. "It changes everything, and I think the biggest by-product of all of this is that there is less stress on our perimeter players. We were really cold at the perimeter in the first half, but it didn't matter because Courtney and Ashley would rebound and go back up and score."

"Coming in here, it was important for Ashley and I to find an offense where we could really work," said Courtney, who also recorded two blocks. "I think we can play well with Coach Coale's motion offense.

"A lot of it is just doing what you know you can do. I know how to rebound, and I know how to score a lay up, but I do have a lot to learn. I just try to do the things that I know I can do."

Playing for the first time with a dominant presence in the middle, junior Leah Rush was outstanding finishing with 15 points and five rebounds.

What Rush found out is that it may be difficult to get shots with the Paris twins getting every rebound. Rush only took nine shots in 22 minutes, while Courtney put up 17 in 19 minutes and Ashley 14 in 23 minutes.

The Paris twins finished one rebound shy of averaging a rebound a minute between them.

Junior Chelsi Welch looked like she has returned to her freshman form when she was named the Big 12 Freshman of the Year. Welch stuggled last year coming off ACL surgery, but against she was fluid, intelligent and agressive finishing with 11 points and five assists.

Coach Coale split time at the point between junior point guard Britney Brown and Kendra Moore, and both players were solid.

OU outrebounded OC tonight 65-27. The Sooners shot 57.7 percent from the floor.

The game with OC will be the only exhibition game for the Sooners. OU's next game will be in the first round of the Preseason WNIT on November 11 at the LNC against Milwaukee-Milwaukee.

One other women's hoops note: Senior Antoinette Wadsworth will miss her senior year with a torn ACL, but she is on course to graduate early and she has something to look forward to this summer. She is engaged to Sooner starting offensive guard Kelvin Chaisson and they are planning to get married in June.

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