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Thursday, November 16, 2006

KU women unsettled for opener at home

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Here it is mid-November, and Bonnie Henrickson isn't even close to determining a rotation.

That's hardly surprising, however, with seven freshmen on Henrickson's Kansas University women's basketball roster.

"Some of it will be based on matchups," Henrickson said prior to tonight's home opener against UMKC, "but I've got a lot of buttons to push."

Tipoff will be 7 p.m. in Allen Fieldhouse. Metro Sports (Sunflower Broadband channel 37) will carry a live telecast.

Henrickson won't push any buttons until today's shootaround. That's when she'll tell her players who'll be starting tonight.

"I'm very open-minded," Henrickson said. "There's so much competition. I like to think it's a good problem."

Depth is one thing, shooting is another, and the Jayhawks didn't shoot well in their two games at the WBCA Classic last weekend in Kansas City, Mo. The Jayhawks shot about 35 percent combined in a victory over Seton Hall and a loss to Iowa.

Especially shaky was the three-point shooting. KU made only four of 24 treys. That's 14.3 percent.

Nothing sticks out more about a basketball team's performance than its shooting, so the inaccuracy is hardly a secret.

"I've talked to them about it," Henrickson said. "And they've probably heard twice as much about it as we've talked about it. Our balance isn't good, and our footwork isn't good. We're just not ready before we shoot."

Henrickson expects the shooting to come around.

"That's an area where we'll improve," she said, "but I don't want that to be our only focus."

Turnovers and defense are also areas that need improvement, Henrickson said.

UMKC came to Lawrence last season and bowed, 73-51. Coach Bo Overton has most of those players back and has added a couple of scorers in guard Brittny Picconi and freshman Chazny Morris.

Picconi leads the Kangaroos with a 15.0 scoring average. Morris is averaging 12.5 points off the bench. Sophomore Marija Zinic leads the Jayhawks at 15.5 points a game, but no one else is averaging more than 7.5 points.

UMKC opened with a 71-46 home win over Northern Colorado, then dropped an 82-71 decision at Colorado State.

The Jayhawks' next game will be Monday against Creighton in Omaha, Neb.

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