AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — The Texas Longhorns’ fast fall from preseason No. 3 all the best way to unranked was one of many largest disappearing acts of the ladies’s faculty basketball season.
They’re nonetheless unranked, but it surely’s straightforward to search out them now. Simply take a look at the highest of the Huge 12 standings.
Wednesday night time’s 78-58 whacking of No. 14 Oklahoma pulled the Longhorns right into a three-way tie at the top of the Big 12 with the Sooners and No. 18 Iowa State.
Texas now has wins over each. The Longhorns are shaping right into a crew few are going to need to face as they chase the league crown and that ever-important likelihood to host the primary two rounds of the NCAA Match.
Texas held the No. 3 scoring crew within the nation almost 30 factors earlier than their common, and beneath 60 factors for the primary time in two seasons. The Longhorns (15-6, 6-2) are 14-0 when holding opponents beneath 60.
“I don’t perceive why Texas isn’t ranked,” Oklahoma coach Jennie Baranczyk stated.
Early season accidents and inconsistency simply clarify why.
Sparkplug level guard Rori Harmon missed the primary 5 video games of the season with a toe harm and Texas misplaced three in a row, together with top-10 matchups with UConn and Louisville.
Harmon’s return ought to have stabilized the lineup, however one other blow got here when ahead Aaliyah Moore was misplaced for the season Dec. 13 with a torn knee ligament. Moore was a pre-season all-conference choice after she posted consecutive 18- and 21-point video games within the NCAA Match.
The Longhorns struggled to cope with the lineup disruptions and a few of their very own bumps and bruises, coach Vic Schaefer stated.
“I don’t suppose we’ve dealt with it nicely in any respect,” Schaefer stated this week earlier than enjoying Oklahoma. “A part of athletics is there are going to be some accidents and the way you reply. We’re not very robust. Its an Achilles of this crew. I’ve had some groups previously, their success wasn’t as a result of how expert they have been, their success was as a result of how robust we have been, how aggressive we have been.”
However Schaefer additionally famous his groups usually play higher late within the season. That was undoubtedly the case the final two years when the Longhorns made consecutive runs to the Elite Eight and beat Baylor for the Huge 12 event championship in 2022.
“What occurred with Rori earlier this yr was simply unhealthy luck. We received her again now, so clearly we’re a bit of bit completely different in loads of methods along with her operating the purpose,” Schaefer stated.
Texas briefly snuck again into the rankings after residence wins over then No. 23 Kansas and Iowa State, however shortly fell out after dropping on the street at Texas Tech.
When Baylor joined among the many unranked this week, it marked the first time in the 47-year history of The Associated Press poll that no team from the state of Texas was ranked.
Schaefer tried to downplay that doubtful distinction, but it surely’s a vital and ominous hurdle to beat because the postseason approaches.
The ladies’s NCAA Match performs the primary two rounds at campus websites. That closely favors the groups chosen to host and play on their residence court docket.
Texas hosted every of the final two seasons. The Longhorns have loads of floor to make up to take action once more, however successful a Huge 12 title would possible have them within the combine to open the postseason of their new campus enviornment in a yr the Closing 4 is simply three hours up the street in Dallas.
They’ve their arch-rival’s vote.
“I feel they need to host,” Baranczyk stated.
Schaefer insists he’s not projecting that far forward. Texas subsequent performs Oklahoma State, which beat the Longhorns within the first matchup.
“I’m simply sport to sport. That’s all I can do,” Schaefer stated. “If we do our job, if we do what we’re able to doing, we’ll see the place all of it shakes out in March.
“Take note of my groups. Over the previous 13 seasons, my groups at all times proceed to get higher. I feel this crew will proceed to work and get higher. After we get to March, we’ll determine all of it out,” Schaefer stated.
AP girls’s faculty basketball: https://apnews.com/hub/womens-college-basketball and https://apnews.com/hub/ap-top-25-womens-college-basketball-poll and https://twitter.com/AP_Top25