Defense helps Longhorns roll past Jayhawks at home

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Freshman forward Joyner Holmes fights off a defender on Feb. 11 in Texas’ 75-42 win against the Jayhawks.
Photo Credit: Rachel Zein | Daily Texan Staff

It was a block party on Saturday at the Frank Erwin Center.

The No. 11 Longhorns swatted away a season–high 13 blocks as they took down the Jayhawks 75-42 to remain perfect in Big 12 play. 

Junior Audrey-Ann Caron-Goudreau led Texas’ blocking efforts with a career-high five rejections.

Texas dominated the post from start to finish, churning out 46 points in the paint while holding Kansas to eight. Texas continued its dominance on the boards as it nearly doubled Kansas  in rebounds, 59-30.

Freshman forward Joyner Holmes notched 15 points and 13 rebounds to cap off her second double-double of the week and seventh of the season.

“Joyner, she’s crushing the boards and it’s just coming easy to her because she’s working on it every day,” senior center Kelsey Lang said. “I think that as a unit, the post players are definitely working well together.” 

Holmes was aggressive at the basket from the opening tip as she got the Longhorns on the board first with a turnaround jumper. 

“I thought our bigs were terrific today,” head coach Karen Aston said. 

Texas reached the 20-win mark on the season and extended its winning streak to 18 — the second-longest active streak in the NCAA behind No. 1 Connecticut.

Junior guard Jessica Washington led an aggressive Kansas attack from beyond the arc. Washington finished with 15 points and connected for four of Kansas’ nine triples on the day.

Kansas head coach Brandon Schneider credits Texas’ defense for locking down Washington in the second half and holding the Jayhawks to their lowest scoring total of the season. 

“We didn’t get many quality looks and I thought they did a great job of contesting every shot,” Schneider said. “I give a lot of credit to Brianna Taylor and Lashann Higgs for the type of individual defenders they are and what they were able to do against
Jessica (Washington).”  

With a 29-point lead entering the final quarter, Aston turned the court over to her younger players. Texas got contributions from every player who hit the hardwood, including sophomore forward Jordan Hosey who turned out eight points and two rebounds.  

“We had a lot of contribution from a lot of people,” Aston said. “The second piece of our improvement from the last time that we played them is that our young players executed things really well and that means that we are growing.” 

Texas travels to Tallahassee to take on No. 5 Florida State on Monday at 6 p.m.