Jayhawks Ready for Bout with No. 4 Texas
Junior Caelynn Manning-Allen
LAWRENCE, Kan. – Kansas women’s basketball faces its second top-10 foe when No. 4 Texas comes to Allen Fieldhouse on Wednesday, Jan. 13. The Jayhawks have faced two nationally-ranked opponents since the start of Big 12 Conference action, including a top-10 program in two of the last three games. The game will be broadcast on the Jayhawk Television Network and the Jayhawk Radio Network.
- Texas owns a lead in the overall series against Kansas, 19-10. KU is 6-7 when hosting the Longhorns inside Allen Fieldhouse.
- The Jayhawks own a 119-196 all-time record against Big 12 Conference foes.
- Kansas has a record of 364-404 away from Allen Fieldhouse.
- In their loss to the No. 6 team in the nation, the Jayhawks held Baylor to nearly 24 points below its season average. Nina Davis, one of the league’s top scorers, was held to her lowest-scoring performance (16 points) in the last six games, and the Lady Bears’ 30-point first half tied for their second-lowest halftime total. Kansas forced the third-most turnovers for Baylor this season (20), while grabbing a season-high 10 steals.
- The Jayhawks have recorded 30 or more points in the paint on seven different occasions, including a season-high 48 against Oral Roberts (12/22).
- KU’s bench outscored Oklahoma’s bench, 23-15, on Dec. 30. The Jayhawks’ bench has combined for 20 or more points in a game five times in 2015-16.
- When Brandon Schneider-coached teams are leading with less than five minutes to play, his overall record is 351-12, and 5-0 at Kansas.
- Junior forward Caelynn Manning-Allen has swatted away a team-high 23 blocks this season, averaging 1.6 per game. She is on pace to rank among the top-5 blocks for juniors and KU’s top-10 season records. She needs 30 more to crack Kansas’ top-10 season list and 19 to etch her name into the junior record.
- Freshman guard Jayde Christopher has dished out three or more assists on six occasions, including a career-high mark of six against Northern Illinois (11/27). She leads the team with 31 assists and turned the ball over just twice in her last four appearances.
ABOUT THE JAYHAWKS
The Jayhawks (5-10, 0-4 Big 12) face their third nationally-ranked foe in the last five games when they welcome No. 4 Texas to Allen Fieldhouse on Jan. 13 at 7 p.m. Kansas is now on a six-game losing streak after falling on the road to Iowa State, 65-49. A three-point halftime deficit stretched to double-digits in the third period, as the Jayhawks shot just 28.6 percent from the field. Foul trouble for Kansas led to numerous trips to the charity stripe for the Cyclones, allowing the home team to hold off the Jayhawks for the remainder of the contest.
As the Jayhawks’ leading scorer for the eighth game this season, sophomore guard Lauren Aldridge posted 12 points, including a perfect 4-of-4 from the free throw line. The Marshfield, Missouri native has recorded double-digit scoring in 11 games this season, the most of any Jayhawk. Aldridge’s 11.4 points per game ranks fourth in the Big 12 among underclassmen.
Junior forward Caelynn Manning-Allen was the only starter to shoot 50 percent or better on the night, putting in 4-of-8 field goal attempts for eight points. Always a defensive threat in the paint, Manning-Allen swatted away three shots, bringing her season total to 26. Her block average of 1.7 per game is on pace to be a top-10 season record for Kansas and ranks sixth in the conference.
Kansas is 3-6 over the last five years against the Longhorns, but Texas has claimed victory in the last five contests. A win for the Jayhawks would mark the first victory over a ranked opponent since last season’s 62-39 triumph over No. 10 California.
SCOUTING THE LONGHORNS
No. 4 Texas is 15-0 on the season, and 4-0 in the Big 12 after a dominant 78-48 win in Stillwater, Oklahoma against Oklahoma State on Jan. 9. The Longhorns now sit atop the conference as the only undefeated squad, their best start to conference play since winning their first five games in the 2002-03 season.
The Longhorns are picked to finish second in the Big 12 by the coaches’ preseason poll, after a sixth-place finish and trip to the NCAA Tournament last season. Texas made it all the way to the Sweet 16 a season ago, before falling to eventual national champion Connecticut. The Longhorns have already bested three ranked opponents and have faced a halftime deficit only once this season.
Senior center Imani Boyette is on a four-game streak of double-double performances, and now averages 12.7 points and 9.7 rebounds per contest. The Los Angeles, California native is shooting 54.3 percent from the floor and is one of the Big 12’s leading rebounders. Boyette’s 3.93 offensive rebounds per game rank second in the conference, while her 5.80 defensive rebounds per game rank fourth.
Sophomore guard Brooke McCarty is behind Boyette with 11.3 points per contest, and is the Longhorns’ greatest threat from beyond the arc. McCarty is averaging 1.7 made three-pointers per game, ranking 13th in the Big 12. The top recruit out of Canada is living up to expectations, with the best scoring average in the conference among freshmen.
Texas holds the third-best offense in the Big 12, averaging 75.0 points per game, despite no players cracking the top-10 in individual scoring. The well-balanced Longhorn attack has been hard to slow down this season, with seven different Texas players averaging seven points or better. Texas’ defense is just as solid, giving up only 52.6 points per game, with the help of Boyette, currently the Big 12’s leading blocker averaging 3.13 swats per game.
THE YOUNG AND THE RESTLESS
The Jayhawks are the only team in the Big 12 without a senior on their roster. In fact, Kansas will not face another team during the regular season that does not have at least one senior on its squad. The last time a Kansas roster did not include a senior was the 2002-03 season. The Jayhawks, along with West Virginia, boast the most underclassmen on their respective rosters with 10 each.
INSIDE THE PAINT
Kansas is averaging 29.9 points per game in the paint. The Jayhawks have recorded 30 or more points in the paint on seven different occasions, including a season-high 48 against Oral Roberts (12/22). During the 2012-13 season, KU had two games with 68 or more points in the paint.
AROUND THE LEAGUE
Redshirt junior Timeka O’Neal ranks sixth in the Big 12 in three-point field goal percentage, shooting 41.5 percent this season. Sophomore guard Lauren Aldridge is 17th in the Big 12 in scoring (11.4 points per game), tied for eighth in three-point field goals made (2.0 per game) and second in minutes played (34.9 minutes per game). Junior forward Caelynn Manning-Allen is 11th in the league in rebounding (6.4 boards per game) and is sixth in blocked shots (1.7 per game).
Kansas hits the road for the second weekend in a row to conclude the 2016 series with West Virginia. The Jayhawks travel to Morgantown on Saturday, Jan. 16. The game is slated for a 7 p.m., tipoff on Roots Sports and the Jayhawk Radio Network.
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