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    Twister Sister Summary - Defend the home court

    Defend your home court. That is the basketball mantra across the country and those words have always held a specific truth in Hilton Coliseum. We’ve enjoyed a mystical “Hilton Magic” for a couple of decades now and we’re spoiled by it. We should be. Last night was a good example of defending your home court. After spending a week it what appeared to be disarray, the ladies in red played defense like it is supposed to be played. Tough. Gritty. Shut you down defense. That is exactly what they did to Baylor. The number 1 team in the country had been averaging 86 points per contest and only UConn had held them in the 60’s prior to their matchup with a gritty team of Sisters. 57 points. Statement. This was a great game to watch win or lose.

    This was a game that started out and was continually played with a defensive flavor throughout the night by both squads. At one point mid way through the first half both squads were shooting a miserly 28% from the floor. Not a shooting exhibition at all. What we got from our ladies were at least parts of what I said would be required to beat the Lady Bears. Defense was one. Coaching was another. A third…free throw shooting we’ll talk about later. It was evident that ISU’s lineup had an inadvertent impact on Pop. She was moved away from the basket (where she was too short to deal with Griner) and never got into the game flow. It was also apparent that Baylor had drawn a circle around her name in their preparations. Pop would only get one basket out of seven tries as she was beaten, shoved, tripped, and slapped when she got the ball. When there was a rare instance of getting a foul called she missed her charity shots. Tough night.

    Defense. What would you say if you knew the best player in the country was held to 9 of 20 shooting? Not bad. To me the best defender on Griner was Amanda Zimmerman who used her strength to constantly push Griner away from the basket. Prins player her tightly, but her biggest problem was quickness. Griner is an incredible athlete and her quickness got Anna into foul trouble. Heck, the way the officials were calling it last night a fly landing on Griner’s arm would have been called for a foul. It was a team defensive effort as the ladies shut off the outside shooting and basically forced Griner to carry her team. I’ll say this right now and echo Jack Easley…if we had made a few of the missed layups last night this might have been a different game. I counted at least 6 bunnies we missed. Make 2-3 at the critical times when we missed them…makes the mind swim to think of what might have happened. Griner did what she needed to and unlike the freshman we saw up here two years ago…she can make free throws as she hit 8 of 10 and ended up with 26 points. How about only having 6 boards? Not bad.

    The amazing defensive stat was seeing star guard Odyssey Sims only scoring one basket – only shooting one basket – on a breakaway layup after a steal.

    The first half was a pure battle that saw Baylor move ahead early 13-5 only to see our ladies grind back to take a 15-13 lead. That would be the last lead we would have as Baylor seemed to do just enough offensively and we made key mistakes that allowed them to hold us at bay. As you can imagine, a 25-21 halftime score would tell you this was not an offensive game. As I watched I was also amazed that one killer stat didn’t end up killing us at all. We were dominated on the boards. Baylor had numerous second and third chances on the offensive end and didn’t capitalize on many of them. For the Cyclones the game plan was simple on offense. Move the ball, hit the three or get it inside to whichever big Griner was not guarding. For the most part it worked. Key three point shots were the great equalizer in a tough first half. Two players in particular - Loz and Brynn – made key three’s to stem Baylor’s scoring.

    At the half I knew what Coach Kim’s speech would be. Defend the three. In some ways this worked as ISU struggled in the second half around the perimeter. In the first 5 minutes Baylors defense was incredibly suffocating and they drew out to a 10 point lead while ISU struggled at both ends. A miss by us would send Baylor running down the floor hoping to not allow us to get our D set up. It worked.

    Our sisters kept fighting back. My player of the game goes to the beleaguered Anna Prins. Yes, she missed several of those bunnies, but as she got into a grove she showed just how good a player she can be. Spinning layups. A hook. Short jumper. A three. Anna threw the entire arsenal at Baylor and carried ISU on her back. She has always said she likes playing against taller women and she seems to have her best games against Baylor. I hope it carries over because she was unstoppable. Twice in the second half mini-runs pulled ISU within 5 points, but we were never able to get over the hump. Our main scorers didn’t score as Moody and as mentioned, Pop didn’t get anything going. Big C looked lost much of the game on offense, but made a couple of key shots late that helped keep us in it. Not sure what is happening there, but I hope she finds her offense and soon. We’ll need it. She’s too talented to have this happen.

    Shot of the night. No contest. This game was about the “bigs” and the littlest gets this award. Loz drove the baseline into the land of the giants, went under the hoop and put up a reverse layup that was a thing of beauty and brought the crowd to its feet. WOW. Gutsy play by our little point guard.

    Question of the game – Brynn went to the bench in foul trouble early in the second half. I kept wondering why she wasn’t back in the game late as Baylor had a double digit lead and the clock was running down. She is probably one of our best 3 point threats right now.

    So in the end, Baylor won by 12. The game was closer than that margin. As Coach Easley said, we just have to find more offense. Might be time for some people to spend some extra hours (if they aren’t all ready) in that nice new facility that is open 24/7. What was the difference? Other than rebounding it was free throws. We missed some key shots and Baylor was awarded 21 opportunities. That was where this game was put away. It was a fun game to watch. Intense. But to me the best part was seeing Coach Fennelly back in action. After sitting on his hands for two games he was on fire again. Seemed to have it somewhat controlled and focused, but he was fighting for his team. He was COACHING. Made all the difference in this game. Great game plan, executed as well as they probably could. Ladies, I hope this is a springboard to better things. No, it wasn’t a moral victory. Those don’t exist. It may just give you some confidence knowing that you went toe to toe with our nation’s number 1 team for 40 minutes. Nicely done. VERY nicely done.



  2. #2
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    Re: Twister Sister Summary - Defend the home court

    Thanks for summing it up nicely.


    Whether you think you can or think you can't;
    you are right. Henry Ford

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    Re: Twister Sister Summary - Defend the home court

    Great summary, hits it on the head. Although Baylor really upped their perimeter defense in the 2nd half, I too thought there could have been more plays for Lauren and Brynn to shoot the 3, Z as well. But all in all, very impressive strategy and execution. They proved they can do it, and that was a big question mark. Especially when you consider that the starters include one transfer senior, one or two juniors, a sophomore, and one or two freshmen. It's a young team. The shooting is a concern, but at least that is something they can attack with time and effort in the gym.



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    Re: Twister Sister Summary - Defend the home court

    Cous,

    Thanks for another terrific report. Personally, I was very excited to see Anna have a great game. Now, if we can get a performance like that from her every game coupled with some outside shooting, we'll win a few games.



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    Re: Twister Sister Summary - Defend the home court

    Great summary and a great game. I feel it was a turning point for the ladies, now they know they can play with anybody. Good grief I hope I hope I hope we can get a game like that out of Prins every time she could dominate. Nobody can really guard her in the Big 12 except Griner and maybe Bone at A&M. Especially with Hallie gone missing/cold/lost Prins can be the boost.

    And our loss to Michigan is looking better since they're leading the Big 10. Though our two losses last week pushed our RPI back down into the 80s we will move up with a couple key wins. K-State's RPI is 15 and KU is in the 20s so they're ripe for the plucking (easier said than done).

    Interesting to see Ok-St beat Texas and now Texas is down with us in 0-2 in conf play and RPI in the 70-80s.

    I'm so excited to come back to Ames this winter, I have tickets to the Oklahoma and Kansas home games in February! That will be an important stretch for the ladies of three home games in a row, all winnable.



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    Re: Twister Sister Summary - Defend the home court

    Great recap. Have to be honest - was not expecting much against Baylor. But I was very impressed with the team's effort. I have seen Baylor play a few times this year, and thought - while Moody did not produce much offensively, she definitely presented a great challenge for Sims. She is going to be a phenomenal point guard for this team. I had been reading about the team playing flat, but I thought it was an all-around good effort by the Cyclones. I was impressed with the defensive effort by Zimmerman and, while in spurts, the strong performance by Prins. While there are things Griner does that are simply hard to defend with her height and athletic ability, she appeared greatly frustrated at times. The double-team was brilliant on occasion, and our other defenders were quick enough not to let any other Baylor players take advantage of this. There were quite a few recruits at this game, and it was a great effort for them to see.



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    Re: Twister Sister Summary - Defend the home court

    Quote Originally Posted by CyPhanatic View Post
    There were quite a few recruits at this game, and it was a great effort for them to see.
    Do you happen to have any names?



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    Re: Twister Sister Summary - Defend the home court

    When I say "recruits", I should note I have no idea if they have offers from ISU, but know they have offers. Ally Disterhoff (2013) plays for IA City West, Shaya Kellogg (2013) ames, Chatrice White (2014) from NE, and also saw Madison Baier - who committed to ISU already. These were the only ones that I recognized specifically, but all are good players.



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    Re: Twister Sister Summary - Defend the home court

    Quote Originally Posted by CyPhanatic View Post
    When I say "recruits", I should note I have no idea if they have offers from ISU, but know they have offers. Ally Disterhoff (2013) plays for IA City West, Shaya Kellogg (2013) ames, Chatrice White (2014) from NE, and also saw Madison Baier - who committed to ISU already. These were the only ones that I recognized specifically, but all are good players.
    According to this article dated June 21, 2011, and this dated Aug. 6, 2011, Chatrice White DOES have an offer from ISU. Comments indicate Oklahoma is interested in her services as well.

    Also, from what I gather in the second article, Hannah Tvrdy (2013) is on ISU radar as well. Did we know this already?


    Last edited by wbbnut; 01-10-2012 at 08:02 AM. Reason: removal of comma; spelling correction

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    Re: Twister Sister Summary - Defend the home court

    Quote Originally Posted by wbbnut View Post
    Also, from what I gather in the second article, Hannah Tvrdy (2013) is on ISU radar as well. Did we know this already?
    I've seen that article posted before, so I think it was mentioned back in August. That's the only time I've seen her name associated with ISU (which probably has less to do with us/her and more to do with the lack of WBB recruiting info out there).


    Last edited by mred; 01-10-2012 at 10:05 AM.

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    Re: Twister Sister Summary - Defend the home court

    Quote Originally Posted by CyPhanatic View Post
    When I say "recruits", I should note I have no idea if they have offers from ISU, but know they have offers. Ally Disterhoff (2013) plays for IA City West, Shaya Kellogg (2013) ames, Chatrice White (2014) from NE, and also saw Madison Baier - who committed to ISU already. These were the only ones that I recognized specifically, but all are good players.
    Thanks for the info. If anyone sees people who look like recruits at a game, feel free to take a picture and post it here or PM me with it, and we can try to identify any unknown recruits in the picture.

    I don't know if we have offered Disterhoft, but I wouldn't be surprised if we have. I believe we've offered Kellogg, and as wbbnut posted we've reportedly offered White.



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    Re: Twister Sister Summary - Defend the home court

    Quote Originally Posted by mred View Post
    I've seen that article posted before, so I think it was mentioned back in August. That's the only time I've seen her name associated with ISU (which probably has less to do with us/her and more to do with the lack of WBB recruiting info out there).
    I was trying to figure out why I didn't see her name on a spreadsheet I keep with names of recruits I hear. Then I found her name on my list of former recruits.

    Seward all-stater Tvrdy to follow in mom's footsteps, commits to NU



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    Re: Twister Sister Summary - Defend the home court

    Quote Originally Posted by CyPhanatic View Post
    When I say "recruits", I should note I have no idea if they have offers from ISU, but know they have offers. Ally Disterhoff (2013) plays for IA City West, Shaya Kellogg (2013) ames, Chatrice White (2014) from NE, and also saw Madison Baier - who committed to ISU already. These were the only ones that I recognized specifically, but all are good players.
    Baier makes it to games often. It's great seeing her in the crowd!



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