Paris leads Sooners to Sweet 16

Coutney Paris scored 30 points and grabbed 15 rebounds as Oklahoma advanced to the Sweet 16 with an 86-70 win over BYU Monday night in Denver. OU will play Stanford at 1:30 p.m. (CST) Saturday in San Antonio. The game will be televised by ESPN. (AP Photo/Jack Dempsey)

For the first time since 2002, Sherri Coale's and Oklahoma are headed back to the Sweet 16.

Coale's second-seeded Sooners (31-4) advanced to next weekend's regional semifinals in San Antonio, Texas with an 86-70 second round win over 7th-seeded BYU Monday night in Denver, Colo.

The win pushed Oklahoma's winning streak to 19 games, which is a new school record.

Once again, the Sooners were led by fabulous freshman Courtney Paris, who finished with 30 points and 15 rebounds. But while Paris was taking care of things inside, OU's shooters were lighting it up from the outside.

In all, the Sooners were 10-for-20 from 3-point range. Junior Erin Higgins, who finished with 15 points, hit 5 of her 8 attempts from behind the arc while Krista Sanchez came off the bench to hit three and Leah Rush added two.

Junior point guard Britney Brown also added nine points and dished a career-high 10 assists.

Oklahoma jumped out to a 26-17 lead with 10:25 to go in the first half, but the Cougars fought back and cut the lead to 28-27 with 6:27 left. However, the Sooners used a 10-2 run from that point on, sparked by five points from Sanchez, to take a 38-29 halftime.

Paris then scored 11 of the Sooners' first 16 points to begin the second half, as the OU opened up a 53-37 lead with 15:07 to go.

From then on, it was all Oklahoma as they hit six 3-pointers the rest of the way in the second half to push the lead to as many as 27 points with 3:11 to go.

The Sooners shot a blazing 51.7 percent from the floor, and their 86 points was the most scored against BYU this season.

Back to Paris, the 6-foot-4 freshman improved her double-double streak to 27 consecutive games. In fact, she had already extended the streak by halftime with 10 points and 11 rebounds.

And with her 15 rebounds, Paris now needs just 12 more to break the single-season record for rebounds in a season (534), which was set by in 1984-85.

The Sooners now advance to the schools' fourth Sweet 16 appearnce where they will play third-seeded Stanford (25-7) Saturday in San Antonio. The Cardinal advanced to the third round with a 88-70 win over Florida State Monday night.

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