Jayhawks Kickoff Big 12 Play at Oklahoma
Freshman Jayde Christopher
LAWRENCE, Kan. – For the second year in a row, Kansas women’s basketball opens Big 12 Conference play on the road. The Jayhawks begin league action at Oklahoma on Wednesday, Dec. 30 at 7 p.m., inside the Lloyd Noble Center. The game will air on the Jayhawk IMG Sports Radio Network and FOX Sports Southwest Plus.
FOLLOWING THE JAYHAWKS
Kansas’ match-up with Oklahoma will be broadcast on FOX Sports Southwest + and the Jayhawk Radio Network, along with audio streaming via KUAthletics.com. Fans can follow live stats through soonersports.com. For the most up-to-date information, follow Kansas women’s basketball on Twitter (@KUwbball).
KANSAS FAST BREAKS
- Since the inception of the Big 12 Conference in 1997, Kansas owns a 5-13 record in league openers, including a 3-7 mark on the road. Wednesday’s match-up against the Sooners is the first time KU has opened Big 12 action with Oklahoma since the start of the league.
- Oklahoma leads the all-time series, 34-30. However, Kansas snapped its four-game losing streak last season with a 65-58 win at the Lloyd Noble Center.
- The Jayhawks own a 119-193 all-time record against Big 12 Conference foes.
- In the month of December, the Jayhawks own an overall mark of 187-84 (.696). During the 2019-10 season, Kansas went 7-0 in the final month of the calendar year.
- Kansas has a record of 364-403 away from Allen Fieldhouse.
- 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.
- Sophomore guard Lauren Aldridge has recorded double-figure scoring performances in nine of 11 games so far this season, while freshman Kylee Kopatich has also logged double-digits in nine of 11 games this year, including the last seven contests. Junior forward Caelynn Manning-Allen has posted double-digit scoring efforts on seven occasions, including her second double-double (10 points, 11 rebounds) of the 2015-16 season against Navy (12/13).
- 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.
- Manning-Allen has swatted away a team-high 22 blocks this season, averaging 2.0 per game. She is on pace to rank among the top-5 blocks for juniors and KU’s top-10 season records. She needs 31 more to crack Kansas’ top-10 season list and 20 to etch her name into the junior record.
ABOUT THE JAYHAWKS
Kansas looks to rebound from a pair of tough losses that finished off its non-conference lineup. The Jayhawks ended with a 5-6 mark after the first half of the season. KU looks to snap a two-game losing skid in league openers with a win on Wednesday night over Oklahoma to start Big 12 Conference action.
Wednesday evening’s match-up is the first time that Kansas has faced Oklahoma in a conference opener since the inception of the Big 12 and second year in a row to start Big 12 games away from the Allen Fieldhouse. The Jayhawks have not won their first game of league action since 2012.
Sophomore guard Lauren Aldridge is averaging a team-high 13.0 points per game behind 40.2 percent shooting from the field and 38.5 percent from the three-point line. In her short career in the Crimson and Blue, Aldridge has connected on 36.0 percent of her attempts from beyond the arc, which is tied for the ninth-best three-point field goal percentage in KU women’s basketball history. Freshman guard Kylee Kopatich continues to make an impact on the hardwood for the Jayhawks early on in her career. She is netting 11.5 points per game, the second-best mark on the roster. Kopatich has scored in double figures in the last seven games and posted her first career double-double with 14 points and 11 rebounds against Oral Roberts (12/22).
Junior forward Caelynn Manning-Allen is the final Jayhawk to average double-digit scoring with 10.0 points per contest. She has swatted three or more blocks in a single game five times this season, while shooting a team-high 51.8 percent from the field. Manning-Allen also leads the squad in rebounds with 7.1 boards per game.
Freshman guard Jayde Christopher has dished out a team-best 31 assists to only eight turnovers. Christopher is coming off of her second career start and is averaging 3.5 points per game. One of the first Jayhawks called upon in the bench is redshirt junior Timeka O’Neal. She is shooting a team-high 44.1 percent from behind the arc and averaging 5.5 points per game.
SCOUTING THE SOONERS
Oklahoma concluded non-conference action with a 9-2 mark, including an eight-game winning streak. The Sooners were selected to finish third in Big 12 Conference play with a total of 69 points, including one first-place vote. OU has won eight of its last nine games heading into the start of league play with the only loss coming at the hands of Texas A&M, whom is nationally ranked in both polls.
The Sooners ended their non-conference slate with just their second loss of the season, a 74-68 loss to the Aggies, which snapped OU’s eight-game winning streak. Wednesday evening’s game marks the sixth game inside the Lloyd Noble Center for Oklahoma this season. The Sooners are 4-1 at home in 2015-16.
Redshirt senior forward Kaylon Williams leads the offensive charge for OU with 14.1 points per game, the 10th-best scoring average in the Big 12, and is shooting 56.8 percent shooting from the field. Williams has grabbed a team-high 9.3 boards per game, good for the fourth-best rebounding average in the league. Williams has collected 11 steals and seven blocks in 11 starts.
Redshirt junior guard Peyton Little is the only other Sooner averaging double-figure scoring for OU. She is averaging 12.5 points per game behind 38.5 percent shooting from the field, including connecting on 33.3 percent of attempts from the three-point line.
THIS DAY IN KU WOMEN’S BASKETBALL HISTORY
Record on Dec. 30: 13-5
Kansas women’s basketball will play on the 30th day of December for the 19th time in program history. The first meeting on Dec. 30 was in 1980 at San Jose State, while the last was against UT Arlington in 2010. On Dec. 30, 2005, Kansas defeated La Salle, 75-73, inside Allen Fieldhouse to remain undefeated at 11-0. A crowd of 4,025 – the second-most ever to watch a non-conference game in Allen Fieldhouse – witnessed the Jayhawks secure their school record 11th-straight victory to open the season. Crystal Kemp finished the game with 25 points and nine rebounds while shooting a perfect 9-of-9 from the free throw line. Freshman guard Ivana Catic scored 16 points, including 6-of-6 from the charity stripe, while also dishing out five assists and pulling down four rebounds.
INSIDE THE PAINT
Kansas is averaging 31.6 points per game in the paint, which is the highest average scoring in the lane by the Jayhawks since the 2012-13 campaign when KU netted 35.2 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.
Kansas hosts a pair of Big 12 Conference match-ups against West Virginia and Baylor. The Jayhawks face the Mountaineers in their Big 12 home opener on Sunday, Jan. 3 at 2 p.m., followed by a contest with the Lady Bears on Wednesday, Jan. 6 at 7 p.m., inside Allen Fieldhouse. Both games will air on the Jayhawk Television Network and the Jayhawk Radio Network.
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