Sunday, February 13, 2005

Kansas women hope to rebound against CU


It's bounce-back time for Kansas University's women's basketball team.

After Wednesday's 57-54 loss at Oklahoma State, the Jayhawks will play host today to struggling Colorado.

Tipoff will be 1:05 p.m. in Allen Fieldhouse. The Big 12 Conference game will be televised live on Sunflower Broadband Channel 6.

First-year KU coach Bonnie Henrickson says her players were maintaining an even keel despite a season of promising highs and perplexing lows.

"You can tell they're disappointed, but we're not devastated," Henrickson said. "To see how poorly we played (at OSU), and it was still a one-possession game, is tough to sit and think about. We've got to be able to rebound and be resilient and win the next game."

KU (10-11 overall, 3-7 Big 12) will meet a Colorado team (8-13, 1-9) that has struggled more than the Jayhawks.

The Buffaloes come to town dragging a six-game losing streak. The skein includes a 65-60 loss to the Jayhawks on Jan. 25 in Boulder. The Buffaloes have two starters taller than Crystal Kemp, KU's biggest player, yet Henrickson said height wasn't much of a problem because the Jayhawks have long-range scoring options.

"Our perimeter stepped up and didn't force us to win it inside for 40 minutes," Henrickson said.

One of the players making a difference is guard Erica Hallman, who scorched Colorado in the previous meeting with 18 points.

Colorado is last in the league standings primarily because the Buffaloes surrender an average of 70 points per game, the worst in the Big 12. In comparison, Nebraska has the 11th-ranked defense at 64 points a game.

Henrickson stressed the need to focus on the Buffaloes if the Jayhawks want to keep their flickering postseason hopes alive.

"That's what we all want, but if that's what you're staring at, and all of sudden you slip like we slipped the other night, if we do that again and do it a couple of more times, then what we're focusing on, we're never going to get," Henrickson said.

Today's game is the first of four straight for the Jayhawks in Allen Fieldhouse. Powerhouse Texas Tech will be here Wednesday, followed by Nebraska a week from today and Baylor on Feb. 23.

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