By Nick Snow
NORMAN, Okla. —
When Toni Young was sidelined with two fouls early in the first half of Sunday’s Bedlam game at the Lloyd Noble Center, the Oklahoma State women’s basketball team needed somebody to provide a spark.
Few expected it to be Brittney Martin — a freshman playing in her first Bedlam game.
“I feel the whole team needs to pick it up once you lose a big part of our team,” Martin said. “I guess Toni gets a lot of points for us, but the whole team needs to step it up — not just one person.”
Martin finished with 12 points and six rebounds — 10 of those points coming in the first half. And while the Sooners came away with a 81-60 victory Sunday in the first edition of Bedlam this season, Oklahoma State coach Jim Littell said the freshman continues to amaze him with each passing game.
“Brit really stepped it up for us,” Littell said. “We needed somebody to step up for us and she did. A lot of players might get rattled, going into an environment like that but she was able to keep her cool and knock down some shots for us.”
A native of Syracuse, Utah, Martin did play in three state championships. But not even that could help her prepare for what she faced in Norman.
“It was a little different,” Martin said. “It’s a lot louder. Everybody warned me what it was going to be like. It was kind of like another game, just louder.”
Like her teammates, Martin wasn’t immune to the Bedlam yips. The Cowgirls struggled by shooting 34.8 percent from the field — including several blown layups.
“I’ll have to go back and look some tape, but you’ll see we missed a lot of easy shots,” Littell said. “We had some takes to the hole and you have got to finish those shots if you want to compete with OU on their home court.”
Without a doubt, Sunday’s Bedlam game was a learning experience for all the Cowgirls and something they will take with them as they prepare for the rest of the conference season. But as Martin showed, she’s not about to be intimidated by anything — including Bedlam.
“We needed to pick it up in the second half,” Martin said. “We came into halftime looking like we were getting killed when really we weren’t down by that much. We needed to come back and play our game and we didn’t.
“It’s just another game. It doesn’t matter who we’re playing, we have to come out with intensity and ready to play our game.”
And with at least seven more Bedlam games left in her career, chances are Sooner fans are already counting down the days until Martin’s graduation.
“She’s just a special player,” Littell said. “On any given night, we know that she’s going to go out there and get double figures for us. She’s just a tremendous talent and she really isn’t fazed by anything.”