By Jason Elmquist
OKLAHOMA CITY —
It was supposed to a challenge for the Oklahoma State women before heading into the loaded Puerto Rico Classic.
Instead, Saturday turned into yet another Cowgirl blowout — routing South Florida 75-56 in the first women's game in the 78-year history of the All-College Classic.
"I feel good about our team. I think they've proven they can play with a lot of teams in the country," Cowgirl coach Jim Littell said. "... I'm not surprised with anything these young ladies do. We expect it out of them as coaches and they expect it out of themselves."
The Bulls (5-4), who had not lost a game by double digits this season, couldn't keep up with the pace of the 14th-ranked Lady Pokes — who were averaging a 37.25 point margin of victory coming into the game. But Littell said he saw some of the same from his own players, who hadn't played a game in 13 days — and leading to a 30 for 64 shooting performance, which was still hands over feet better than the 20 for 58 (34.5 percent) by South Florida.
"We were a little sluggish offensively compared to what we normally are, but we've been off for 13 days," Littell said. "But when the ball wasn't going in and we were struggling a little bit offensively, we continued to guard on the other end and didn't relinquish any lead."
Oklahoma State had four scorers reach double figures, led by Liz Donohoe who went 6 of 13 for team-high 18 points along with a game-high eight rebounds. Senior point guard Tiffany Bias went 7 for 14 with 16 points and seven assists — though it was coupled with four turnovers.
Brittney Martin also finished with 16 points on 8 of 17 shooting, and hauled in seven rebounds. For her play, Martin was awarded the Henry P. Iba MVP trophy.
"I think it's pretty cool," Martin said. "I'm happy with the award, but I'm never going to be satisfied (with my play)."
Center LaShawn Jones was the fourth Cowgirl to score double digits, going 4 for 7 with 10 points along with six rebounds. Backup point guard Brittany Atkins nearly made it five double-digit scorers for OSU with eight points — going 2 for 5 from the field and 3 for 4 from the free throw line.
Oklahoma State will head to the Puerto Rico Classic, leaving Stillwater Tuesday for two games on Thursday and Saturday against Michigan State and Georgia Tech, respectively. Both teams have been in the top 25 this season, with each team receiving votes in the last polls.
"I think we're all on the same page. I think we all want the same thing and have the same goal in mind," Bias said.