March 20, 2012
Complete Release as a PDF
2012 Women's NIT Second Round
Missouri State Lady Bears (24-8/14-4 MVC) at
Oklahoma State Cowgirls (18-12/8-10 Big 12)
Date: Thursday, March 22, 2012
Tip: 7:05 p.m. (Central)
Location: Stillwater, Okla.
Site: Gallagher-Iba Arena (13,611)
Radio: KTXR 101.3 FM
Live Audio: RadioSpringfield.com
Live Video: OKState.com
Live Stats: OKState.com
The Missouri State Lady Bears (24-8, 14-4 Missouri Valley Conference) continue play in the Women’s National Invitation Tournament Thursday at 7:05 p.m. with a third-round visit to Oklahoma State (18-12, 8-10 Big 12). The game will be MSU’s 14th WNIT game in its history, but the first away from Springfield, as the Lady Bears boast a 10-3 record in the event.
Missouri State and Oklahoma State met in Stillwater on Dec. 8 of this season with the Cowgirls winning 80-57. Jasmine Malone score 21 points and hit seven three-pointers for the Lady Bears, though the team shot just 30 percent from the floor compared to 50 percent for OSU.
MSU’s run through the first two rounds of the WNIT includes wins over UMKC and Memphis in which the Lady Bears averaged 81.5 points per game on 50 percent shooting.
Malone enters this game with 993 career points and could become the fourth active Lady Bear to reach 1,000. No other MSU team has had more than two active 1,000-point scorers on its roster.
Oklahoma State leads the all-time series 5-3, with the Cowgirls holding a 3-1 lead in
Stillwater. Prior to Dec. 8, the teams last met in 2000 with the Lady Bears claiming a 78-44 victory in Springfield during their most recent Final Four season. A year earlier, OSU won 66-58 in Stillwater.
Scouting Oklahoma State
Oklahoma State is 18-12 overall and finished in a three-way tie for sixth place in the Big 12 at 8-10. The Cowgirls are 14-3 at home with losses to NCAA Tournament teams Baylor, Kansas and Kansas State.
The Cowgirls have three double-figure scorers, led by Tiffany Bias with 12.8 points and 6.5 assists per game, Big 12 Freshman of the Year Liz Donohoe at 12.2 points and 7.2 rebounds, and Toni Young at 10.7 points and 6.9 boards.
As a team, OSU averages 65.2 points and allows 58.7 while shooting 39.1 percent overall, 30 percent on three-pointers and 69.5 percent from the foul line. The Cowgirls allow opponents to shoot just 34.9 percent on the season.
OSU’s Jim Littell, who was named head coach on Dec. 9, coached MSU Director of Basketball Operations Jerise Freeman at Seward County (Kan.) Community College from 2003-05.
The Lady Bears are making their fifth appearance in the tournament with an all-time record of 10-3 in the event. MSU dropped an overtime decision to Eastern Kentucky in the opening round of the 2002 meet, then swept the WNIT field with five straight victories in 2005 to claim their first national tournament title. In 2010, the Lady Bears knocked off Oral Roberts and Samford before falling to Illinois in the third round at JQH Arena, and defeated Rice before falling to Arkansas in the second round last year.
Missouri State owns wins over UMKC and Memphis in 2012.
About the WNIT
The 64-team, single-elimination WNIT will consist of 31 automatic berths and 33 at-large selections, with all games played at host school sites. An automatic bid was offered to each established Division I conference to the team that finished highest during the regular season and did not receive a bid to the NCAA Tournament. The 33 at-large bids were filled by the top remaining teams available, as decided by a series of factors. All Division I teams with overall records of .500 or better are considered for the at-large berths.
Dates for the 2012 WNIT include first-round games on March 14-16 second-round contests on March 17-19, third-round match-ups on March 21-23, quarterfinal games on March 24-26, semifinal pairings on March 28-29, and the championship game on March 31.