Dec. 5, 2006
South Carolina (5-3 overall) hosts No. 3 Oklahoma at 7 p.m. Thursday at the Colonial Center.
All fans will be admitted to Thursday’s game against the Sooners for only $1.
On The Air
The game will be broadcast live on WISW 1320 AM Radio in Columbia, with Brad Heller handling play-by-play duties and Robin Muller providing analysis. For fans outside of the Columbia area, the game can be accessed worldwide via the internet at uscsports.com. The game will be televised live by Cox Communications with Bob Carpenter handling play-by-play and Debbie Antonelli providing analysis. South Carolina’s two cable providers, Time Warner and Comcast, will not carry the game, but it will be available to fans nationwide — South Carolina included — through ESPN’s Fullcourt package. Contact your cable provider for details.
How To Access the Web Broadcast
Go to uscsports.com, then click on the women’s basketball link on the left side of the page. From there, click on the “schedule” link near the top of the page, then click on the “Audio Broadcasts” link at the top of the page. Choose women’s basketball from the scroll bar on the right side of the page and choose the desired game from the list.
About The Coaches
South Carolina Head Coach Susan Walvius is in her 10th year at the helm of the Gamecock women’s basketball program. The 2002 SEC Coach of the Year, Walvius led the Gamecocks to the Elite Eight in 2002 and has guided Carolina to the postseason in three of the last five seasons. She has attracted top-15 recruiting classes to Carolina in 2003 (10th) and in 2005 (13th). One of the most recognizable and fast becoming one of the most respected figures in all of women’s basketball, Sherri Coale is in her 10th year at Oklahoma, where she has taken the Sooner program from the brink of extinction and turned it into one of the nation’s most powerful programs. Coale led the Sooners to an undefeated 16-0 run through the Big 12 season as part of a 31-5 overall record last year and guided Oklahoma to a trip to the NCAA Tournament’s Sweet 16. She has taken the Sooners to seven NCAA Tournaments in her nine full seasons in Norman.
Sunday’s game marks the first-ever meeting between Oklahoma and South Carolina, but the Gamecocks faced another perennial Big 12 contender last season when they lost a 59-55 decision to Texas as part of the Junkanoo Jam Tournament in the Bahamas. Carolina is 3-4 all-time against the Big 12, with wins over Kansas State, Missouri and Texas Tech to go with a pair of losses to the Longhorns and a loss to Nebraska.
A South Carolina Win Over Oklahoma Would…
>> Mark the Gamecocks’ second consecutive win over a ranked non-conference opponent, as Carolina handed No. 16 Minnesota a 79-61 defeat at the Colonial Center last year.
>> Snap the Sooners’ 20-game regular-season winning streak, a mark that is one shy of tying Baylor for the second-longest regular-season winning streak in Big 12 history.
>> Snap the Sooners’ 12-game regular-season winning streak in games played away from Norman.
>> Give the Gamecocks their first win over a top five opponent since Carolina claimed a 69-55 win over then-No. 4 NC State in 1999.
>> Mark the Gamecocks’ first win over a top-10 team since a 71-52 victory over then-No. 6 Vanderbilt in 2002.
>> Be the most significant upset in women’s college basketball to date this season.
>> Improve Susan Walvius’ record to 96-45 in regular-season games played against non-conference opposition.
>> Improve Susan Walvius’ record to 64-10 all-time in home games played against non-conference opposition.
Sooners Bring High Ranking Into Colonial Center
Playing in the SEC, South Carolina is no stranger to hosting national powers, as the Gamecocks hosted the No. 1 team in the nation in each of the last two seasons (LSU in 2005 and Tennessee in 2006). The Sooners, however, are the highest ranked non-conference opponent ever to visit the Colonial Center since it opened in 2002 and are the highest-ranked non-conference opponent to face the Gamecocks in Columbia since Carolina upset No. 3 Auburn in the Carolina Coliseum, 83-76 on Dec. 29, 1990 back when the Gamecocks were a member of the Metro Conference.
Gamecocks Upset No. 16 Minnesota Last Year
The last ranked non-conference opponent to visit the Colonial Center left on a sour note, as South Carolina handed then-No. 16 Minnesota a 79-61 defeat on Dec. 13 of last year. The Golden Gophers scored the first points of the game, but South Carolina answered with a 13-0 run and never looked back, knocking down six of their first eight shots while limiting Minnesota to only 1-of-10 shooting to start the game.
Carolina’s Last Win Over A Top-Five Team
Through the years, South Carolina has faced 47 opponents ranked in the top five in the Associated Press poll. Carolina’s last win over an AP top five opponent was a 69-55 victory over NC State in Raleigh on Dec. 30, 1999.
Carolina At Its Best When The Lights Are Brightest
South Carolina has won both of its last two regular-season televised games, as the Gamecocks claimed a 61-52 win over Arkansas at the Colonial Center last year, then went on the road to hand Auburn a 58-46 defeat. Both games were televised by Fox Sports South.
South Carolina faces perhaps its stiffest test of the 2006-07 season when it hosts No. 3 Oklahoma Thursday, but the game will provide an intriguing scenario in the paint, as the Sooners have the best pure post player in the nation in 6-foot-4 Courtney Paris, but South Carolina has waves of big bodies it can throw at Paris inside. The Gamecock roster boasts four players who stand 6-foot-3 or taller. Among the likely candidates to get an up-close look at Paris are 6-foot-5 Iva Sliskovic and 6-foot-3 Lakesha Tolliver. The Sooners’ trip to the Colonial Center is the final game of a six-game OU road swing, so fatigue may be a factor for Sherri Coale’s team. The Sooners were in Hawaii for a pair of games against Eastern Kentucky and Hawaii on Nov. 17 and 18 before stopping in Los Angeles for a matchup with UCLA on Nov. 21. Regional contests at Lamar and Tulsa followed on Nov. 29 and Dec. 2, respectively, heading into Thursday’s game in Columbia. South Carolina looks to snap Oklahoma’s 20-game regular-season winning streak and could play the role of spoiler to the Sooners, who could match Baylor for the second-longest regular-season winning streak in Big 12 history with a win over the Gamecocks.