Griffin leads No. 4 Huskers past No. 10 Okla StFeb 4, 2010 - 4:39 AM By ERIC OLSON AP Sports Writer
LINCOLN, Neb.(AP) -- Even as she's put up career offensive numbers this season, Yvonne Turner always says her game begins with defense.
She was true to those words Wednesday night, holding down national scoring leader Andrea Riley on one end of the floor and turning in another sharp performance on the other in fourth-ranked Nebraska's 88-67 victory over No. 10 Oklahoma State.
"Playing against the top guard in the nation," Turner said, "it sends fuel to my fire."
Turner made four 3-pointers and scored 17 points to lead the Cornhuskers (20-0, 7-0 Big 12) to their 10th win by 20 points or more.
Kelsey Griffin had 19 points in 19 minutes, and three other Huskers scored in double figures.
Nebraska led by double digits five minutes into the game. The advantage grew to 25 on Turner's four-point play, and the Huskers were up 51-27 at half. They led by as many as 36 points in the second half.
"You don't draw it up that way," Huskers coach Connie Yori said, "but you hope you play well. I see this in our practice setting, and you hope it carries over."
Oklahoma State (18-4, 6-2), coming off a road win against then-No. 8 Texas A&M, flopped in its first game ever as a Top 10 team. The Cowgirls missed 10 of 11 shots to start and committed seven turnovers in the first 9 minutes.
Riley missed seven shots in a row before making her first basket 12 minutes into the game. Riley sat out most of the second half with four fouls and finished with a season-low 15 points, 11 under her average.
Turner so frustrated Riley that when she stole the ball from her early in the second half, Riley drew a foul for punching at the ball and glancing Turner.
On Nebraska's ensuing possession, Turner's 3-point shot from the top of the key bounced straight up off the back iron, as high as the backboard shot clock, and dropped straight down through the hoop.
"I guess that's a shooter's touch," Turner said. "I was really lucky for that ball to fly that high and just bounce back in. I had an angel on the ball."
A couple minutes later, Turner swatted Riley's 3-point shot, picked up the ball and took it all the way for a layup.
When Turner needed a rest, Nicole Neals drew Riley and was equally effective.
"We were able to keep the heat on her," Yori said. "We did a good job in transition defense to not let her get to the basket. It's easier when you score. Those two things go hand in hand. Vonny did a great job on her."
Dominique Kelley scored 13 points, Lindsey Moore 11 and Cory Montgomery 10 for the Huskers.
Turner flustered Riley all game, fighting through screens to stay with OSU's big scorer and holding her to 4-of-15 shooting.
Toni Young had 14 points and Lindsey Keller and Precious Robinson 12 apiece for the Cowgirls. Tegan Cunningham, averaging 17.8 points, was guarded by Kelley and scored just four.
Oklahoma State coach Kurt Budke, whose team incurred its most lopsided loss of the season, was all smiles afterward. He said the blowout wasn't so much a result of his team not showing up as it was Nebraska having a dominant team.
"I'm really truly happy for Connie," Budke said. "She's paid her dues. She has this special team that just doesn't come every year unless you're in Hartford, Conn. I told her after the game that I understand it's hard to take a breath, but enjoy this team because you have something going."
The Huskers and top-ranked Connecticut remain the nation's only unbeaten teams. Like UConn, the Huskers are winning in convincing fashion. Nebraska's average margin is 25 points a game, and it is playing in the strongest league in the nation.
Even so, the Huskers are ranked behind Stanford and Notre Dame teams that each have one loss.
Yori, who makes a habit of pooh-poohing the ratings, wasn't about to get sucked into a debate over whether it's right that the Huskers are ranked behind anyone other than Connecticut.
"I don't care where we're ranked," she said. "We need to do our thing. I appreciate people asking about it and wanting to know about it. We started out unranked, we moved our way up, and if we continue to play good basketball we'll see where it takes us."
- NCAA WOMENS BB
OKLAHOMA ST (10) 67
NEBRASKA (4) 88 FINAL
Feb 3 9:56 PM
- NCAA WOMENS BB
OKLAHOMA ST (10) 27
NEBRASKA (4) 51 HALFTIME
Feb 3 8:58 PM
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