In a very impressive performance in front of a national TV audience, the third-ranked Sooners served notice that they will be one of the favorites for the National Champioship by pounding 19th-ranked DePaul 105-71 in front of 10,448 fans at the Lloyd Noble Center.
Leading the way for the Sooners was the Paris twins — Courtney and Ashley — who dominated inside. Despite a slow start Courtney finished with recorded her 34th-straight double-double with 23 points, 11 rebounds, five assists, four blocks and one steal, while Ashley came of the bench and scored 16 points, five rebounds, four assists and one block agianst only one turnvoer.
However, it was senior guard Chelsi Welch who sparked the Sooners from the opening tip and gave the offense balance. Welch hit two three's and had 11 points at halftime, and continued to play well in the second half to tie Courtney with game scoring honors at 23. Welch finished 8-for-11 from the field, 4-for-7 from 3-point land, 3-for-4 from the charity stripe and three steals. The only knock on Welch's game was six turnovers.
Senior Leah Rush also reached double figures with 11, along with freshman Amanda Thompson with 10. And Courtney got another double-double by leading the Sooners with 11 rebounds. DePaul's junior Erin Carney grabbed 19 rebounds.
The Sooners outrebounded DePaul 56-38. They also shot 51.8 percent from the floor holding DePaul to 32.4 percent shooting.
All five freshmen played in the game with Amanda Thompson and Nyeshia Stevenson both playing 16 minutes. It is clear that Thompson and Stevenson will be in the Sooners' rotation this year.
The 36-point win is also believed to be the largest over a ranked team in Sherri Coale's 11 seasons.
Oklahoma will now hit the road for their next six games starting in Honolulu, Hawaii against Eastern Kentucky in the first round of the Waikiki Marriott Beach Classic next Friday.
Box Score | Quotes | Notes
Sooners smack DePaul in season opener, 105-71
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