Archive for Sunday, December 7, 2008

KU women fall to Marquette, 67-57

December 7, 2008

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— Shades of last year for Kansas University’s women’s basketball team.

The Jayhawks, who led the Big 12 Conference in turnovers last season, lapsed into their old ways Sunday afternoon by coughing up the ball 28 times.

Marquette converted those giveaways into 29 points on the way to a 67-57 victory at the McGuire Center.

“Making (Kansas) turn the ball over 28 times,” Marquette coach Terri Mitchell said, “and changing our defense as much as we did takes focus. I was a little concerned before finals where the focus would be and they did great. Now they can knock those finals out this week.”

Meanwhile, Kansas flunked Holding Onto the Ball 101. Each Jayhawk was whistled for at least one turnover except Katie Smith and she played only in the last minute.

In losing for the first time in six starts, Kansas wasted a strong performance from Danielle McCray who had 22 points and 13 rebounds. The 5-foot-11 junior drilled a career-high six three-point goals.

McCray had recorded a career-high 29 points to go with 13 boards in the Jayhawks’ 74-55 win over the Golden Eagles last season in Lawrence.

“Obviously, we have all the respect in the world for Danielle McCray and what she does,” Mitchell said, “and I think our team made her a complete focus and were able to stop her the best we could."

Nicollette Smith also had a double-double with 10 points and 10 boards, but she was also charged with a team-high six turnovers.

Sade Morris, who had been averaging double-figure scoring, made only 3-of-12 shots and finished with nine points. Morris also had five turnovers as did LaChelda Jacobs.

Krystal Ellis led the Golden Eagles (7-2) with 32 points and was credited with four steals.

Kansas took control in the first half and enjoyed a 33-27 lead at the break. However, Marquette’s press began to take its toll and the lead eventually disappeared.

Kansas trailed by just three points with about minutes remaining, but Golden Eagles took charge down the stretch.

The 28 turnovers — 13 in the first half; 15 in the second — were the most by a KU team in at least three years. The Jayhawks’ single-game high last season was 26 against Creighton. KU will meet the Bluejays on Saturday in Omaha, Neb.

Kansas’ next game will be at 7 p.m. Wednesday against Western Illinois in Allen Fieldhouse.

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