Wednesday, March 2, 2011

UCO Opens Tourney In Dominating Fashion

UCO Opens Tourney In Dominating Fashion

      BARTLESVILLE, Okla.  – No strangers to tournament success, Central Oklahoma opened the 2011 LSC Championships at Bruin Fieldhouse with a dominating quarterfinal victory, cruising past Angelo State, 76-52, in Wednesday’s first game.  UCO senior Ashley Beckley was named the LSC North Offensive Player of the Year on Tuesday’s banquet in Bartlesville, and she proved more than worthy of the honor. Beckley posted a double-double with 14 points and 10 rebounds, with three assists and two steals.
UCO junior forward Alyssa Fuxa led all scorers with 20 points while Alex Richardson scored 16 points, with seven rebounds and a team-high five blocked shots. Richardson, the reigning LSC North Offensive Player of the Week, just missed her third straight double-double.  The Bronchos (19-8) will advance to Friday night’s (6 p.m.) semifinal round against the Tarleton State-Southeastern Oklahoma winner.  UCO entered the game as the LSC’s scoring leader at 75.2 points per game, and just eclipsed their average behind a 42-point second-half effort.
The Bronchos shot 48.3 percent in the second half, thanks in large part to an 8-0 run to start the second half.   However, the gritty but undermanned Rambelles kept fighting to the end despite suiting up only seven players. Senior Camille Perkins, a four-year starter at ASU, likely finished her collegiate career with a team-high 18 points. Paige Weishuhn scored 14 points and grabbed nine rebounds.
      Although the Bronchos edged ASU just 69-64 in the only regular-season meeting between the teams back on Dec.11 in Edmond, UCO was in control virtually from start to finish. 
In the first half, the Bronchos closed out the half on a 12-5 run in the final five minutes as five different players connected on field goals to give UCO a commanding 34-22 edge at the break.  But by the second media timeout of the half, UCO had doubled up the Belles and never looked back.

• The Bronchos are now 3-1 all-time against Angelo State in the Lone Star Conference Post-Season Tournament with wins in 1992, 1993 and 2011.

• The Bronchos have now won five straight first-round post-season tournament games (2007-11) after losing six straight (1994-97, 2003, 2005).

• Alex Richardson – who blocked 33 shots during the regular season – had a UCO tournament-record five blocks in Wednesday's first-round win over Angelo State.

• Senior Ashley Beckley scored 14 points Wednesday against the Rambelles to give her 105 points in eight career post-season tournament games.  UCO's career tournament scoring record is held by Lizzie Brenner, who scored 148 points in eight tournament games (2007-09).

* Today's loss to Central Oklahoma broke a four-game win streak for the Rambelles.  Angelo Statehad won their final four regular-season games, as well as having won eight of their last nine contests.

* Angelo State is now 1-3 against UCO, all-time in LSC Quarterfinal play.

* Senior guard Camille Perkins concluded her Rambelle career as the school's second all-time leading scorer.  She tallied a total of 1,764 career points.

* Central Oklahoma's 76 points represented the second-highest point total allowed by the Rambelles.  UT-Permian Basin scored a seasons-best 83 points during an 83-80 win over ASU on Nov. 23.

* Angelo State's 52 points was the Rambelle's third lowest scoring output of the season.  They managed just 52 points, earlier, against St. Mary’s on Jan. 3, scored 47 points in a loss at Tarleton State on Jan. 15 and had a season low 40 points at Northeastern State on Dec. 13.

* The Rambelles three steals tied for their second-fewest in a game this season.  They had registered three thefts in two previous outings.

Central Oklahoma
Game Notes

Guy Hardaker, Head Coach
On the game itself
“Very pleased with the way we played tonight. If we out rebounded our opponent we generally win and tonight we were able to do it.”
On the trip to LSC Tournament
“It’s a great experience for our girls. We’ve been blessed enough to get here each time. I wish every team in the conference could experience it. The banquet is incredible. The atmosphere is like a state-tournament type which all of the girls have been part of in Oklahoma. This is a tournament that we look forward to, and I could tell how excited our team was in practice.”
On the game itself
We felt like every game today was going to be close. I know how well coached Angelo is as a team. Sally does a great job of coaching them. Today, we kind of went into wanting to keep it very simple and attack them from the get to go. I didn’t expect it to end up the way it ended. Angelo was a bit short-handed and that probably added to our victory.
About the UCO program
Every year we’ve got to keep working because everyone else is. It’s not easy to get all the girls you want. There are a lot of opportunities out there for players today. We expect to work hard and I feel like our team is going to win every time out.
Alex Richardson, UCO player
On the game
“My teammates do a really good job of looking for each other inside. We were able to spread the ball across the floor
“We take pride in our efforts. Each of us tried to contain our individual man and looked for chances to help. Our team is more like a family. We like and love each other so much that we are able to read each other’s minds.”
 Alyssa Fuxa, UCO player
On the game
“I just wanted to do whatever I could do for the team. All of us got into a little fouling spat. As far as the second half, hopefully we wanted to play as a team. Everyone did a good job of finding an open opportunity.
ASU is a dribble drive team. Coach needed to emphasize that we had to be able to defend by ourselves. We needed not to rely on help as much. For the most part, we were able to contain our own man and help out.”
Angelo State-UCO Post Game Quotes – 76-52 Final UCO

Head Coach Sally Brooks
“We’re disappointed in the way we played today, but other than that there is nothing disappointing about this year. We went into it with “No Excuses” as our motto and along the way we lost four players with ACL injuries and ended up playing the last part of the season with only seven players.  We played great the last two weeks of the season and I couldn’t be any more proud of them. I’ve been coaching a long time but I don’t know if I’ve ever been more proud of seven players on the same team than I am with these seven.

“Where did things go wrong today?”
We didn’t play very good defense. We played good defense all year long and defense is what has kept us in the game. We shot the ball this poorly a bunch all year; it’s always been a struggle. From the beginning to the end, we didn’t play good defense.

Paige Weishuhn

Effort to get the team here:
It was definitely a challenge but with the group of girls that we have, but we’re all hard workers. Every time we step out on the floor, we go as hard as we can for as long as we can. We have to stay mentally strong and just forget about being tired and play.

Camille Perkins

“What will you take away from this tournament?”

It was kind of frustrating (last year), not returning to the conference tournament. I just knew my last year I wanted to go back. We made it a goal this summer and we worked extremely hard. I couldn’t have asked for a better group to end my senior year with, especially those six. I know they are going to carry on the Belle legacy.

(Tearing up) I don’t have any regrets because every time I stepped on the floor, in practice or in a game, I gave it 110% because I knew this day would come. I just thank my parents and Coach Brooks for always pushing me. I couldn’t be happier to have ended my career at Angelo State.

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