Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Jayhawks change up strategy for first game without Davis


When the Kansas University women’s basketball team knocked off Iowa State in a double-overtime thriller on Jan. 11 at Allen Fieldhouse, junior forward Carolyn Davis played 32 minutes, scored 21 points, grabbed four rebounds and dished three assists.

During that same game, KU freshman Chelsea Gardner logged eight minutes, one rebound and one turnover.

With Davis now sidelined for the rest of the season and the Jayhawks and Cyclones slated for a rematch at 7 tonight in Ames, Iowa, Gardner knows exactly what she’s facing as she prepares to make the first start of her college career.

“I’ve got some big shoes that I need to fit into,” said the 6-foot-3 forward from DeSoto, Texas. “And I just feel that I need to practice harder and come out and work hard in the games.”

KU coach Bonnie Henrickson said Monday that she would not ask Gardner to become Davis. Putting that much responsibility on a true freshman is simply too much to ask. After all, it was Davis who dominated the two overtime periods against the Cyclones in the first meeting, scoring 12 of her 21 points in the extra frames and playing all but a few seconds while going 3-for-5 from the floor and 6-for-7 from the free-throw line to seal the victory.

“She’s not gonna get the touches and the shots that Carolyn had,” said Henrickson of Gardner. “But it’s not like we’ll throw all of that out. I know her teammates have confidence in her, and I would think that would give her confidence in herself.”

While Gardner will slide into Davis’ spot in the starting lineup, several other Jayhawks will be asked to pick up the slack for their fallen leading scorer. With Davis’ 17.5 points and 60 percent shooting out of the lineup, Henrickson said she was anticipating a drop-off in her team’s efficiency on the offensive end. She has a plan to combat that.

“We’ll have to defend better,” Henrickson said. “When you lose someone who’s able to score like that, you don’t have as much wiggle room. But the defensive end, we can control that.”

That will be particularly important tonight against Iowa State’s dangerous trio of post players, Hallie Christofferson, Chelsea Poppens and Anna Prins, who combined average 33 points and 21 rebounds per game.

“Every freshman post I’ve ever taken up there, (ISU coach) Bill Fennelly has flare-screened the fool out of them and jacked up threes all night on us,” Henrickson said. “I do know that about them. Poor Carolyn just got picked on her freshman year up there, so we’ll anticipate the same thing this time.”

Although the Jayhawks lead the all-time series, 44-27, the two have split their season series in three of the past four years, and KU has not won in Ames since 2006. The Cyclones have won three straight at home and are 10-2 at Hilton Coliseum this season. They had a three-game winning streak snapped last weekend at Texas Tech, when they fell to the Red Raiders, 51-41.

“They’ve played really well since they were here,” Henrickson said. “They’re a team on a run right now.”

Three Jayhawks named Academic All-Big 12

Junior point guard Angel Goodrich and sophomore forward Tania Jackson earned first-team Academic All-Big 12 honors, the league announced Tuesday. Goodrich and Jackson were two of the 30 members on the first team who own a grade-point average of 3.2 or better.

Junior forward Carolyn Davis earned a spot on the second team, which consists of 16 players who maintain a GPA of 3.0-3.19


wildjayhawk 7 years, 9 months ago

This might be the best season for Bonnie or close, but Bonnie has to go. For a university to have a reputation for basketball, Bonnie's basketball brings the whole thing down.

Migady 7 years, 9 months ago

Playing well or awful, Women's basketball doesnt effect the reputation KU has as a basketball school. Shy of a national championship...It just doesn't.

kubiggestfan 7 years, 9 months ago

The offense will suffer as only certain players are allowed to shoot the ball, No matter how wide open a player may be. This has to and should have changed long time ago. There are shooters on this team, but some look too nervous as to pull the trigger! If everyone is allowed to just play ball and not be so handcuffed, maybe we would be able to compete and come out with the wins we will need to make the NCAA Tournament. Take some notes from the mens team...I by no means will compare the women talent to the mens talent at KU, but we can surely compete with the likes of the Big 12 if we are allowed to play basketball....NOT BONNIEBALL !

no_fan 7 years, 9 months ago

What are you people talking about? Fanfromafar say we should be thankful for HCBH! She has not come close to the NCAA tournament, WNIT tournament is getting worse, pre-season is weak to up her winning record to make season record look good, players leave every year, players leave in the middle of the season, I am sure more are leaving, the way she Coach and manage her players is GREAT! It only took 8 years and a down BIG 12 league to win a couple games that they have not won in the past. Now, with Carolyn out, oh no another excuse for not making the NCAA tournament! Be grateful for the job she is doing with the OVERALL program. Lmbo!

big12ku 7 years, 9 months ago

Good luck tonight, ladies. I hope starting Gardner works. Personally I would've started Jackson. She's bigger, stronger, rebounds, defends and can step out and shoot the three. And.....she's more experienced. I don't think the freshman is ready but maybe shell prove me wrong. Again good luck ladies.

kubiggestfan 7 years, 9 months ago

they changed strategy right....for the worse. what kind of game was that? embarassing to say the least. our team looked defeated from the start. was the strategy to walk the whole game through? if so, it did not work. iowa state did not have to play hard for this win....where was our fight?

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