Yvonne Anderson

Senior forward Ashley Gayle, 22, ended her career with an early exit from the NCAA Tournament. Texas has one win in the tournament in five years under Gail Goestenkors.

Photo Credit: The Associated Press

Although her seat is hotter than ever after another early NCAA tournament exit, head coach Gail Goestenkors has to be somewhat relieved that her fifth, and perhaps most turbulent, season at Texas has reached a conclusion.

The Longhorns’ 68-55 loss to No. 8 seed West Virginia Mountaineers in the first round of the NCAA tournament was a fitting end to yet another disappointing season under Goestenkors. In its final game, Texas scored a season-low 18 first half points and converted on less than a third of its overall field goal attempts, not exactly the performance expected out of a team that started the season ranked in the top 25 with plenty of NCAA tournament experience among its key players to boot.

Senior guards Yvonne Anderson, Ashleigh Fontenette and post Ashley Gayle had reached the tournament in each of the past three seasons, only to be sent home in the first round every time.

Anderson and Fontenette, along with sophomore Chassidy Fussell were looked often for scoring production due to a rash of injuries that plagued the team all year.

Fussell led the team in scoring all season at over 16 points per game. She also became just the second player in UT history to shoot over 90 percent or better from the free-throw line.

Fontenette and Anderson both averaged a shade under 12 points per game and are both a part of the 1,000-point club.

Gayle finishes her career as the all-time leading blocker in Texas history with 370 blocks.

One positive to take away from the Longhorns’ less than spectacular season is the fact that there is a tremendous amount of talent that is stashed away deep down on Goestenkors’ bench. And there’s more coming in this year’s recruiting class as well.

Freshman guard standout Cassie Peoples was limited to just six games this year after failing to heal properly after leg surgery last summer. Peoples was ranked as the No. 7 guard in her class by HoopGurlz. Sophomore guard Shanice McKoy was also unable to play this season after undergoing reconstructive knee surgery in the summer. McCoy played in 14 games in her freshman season.

Sophomore guard Tiffany Moore also played in just four games before her season was ended by a serious allergy problem.

Couple in the intermittent injuries of two more sophomores: lightning-quick guard Chelsea Bass and dominant (when healthy) post Cokie Reed, and you can start to understand the magnitude of the injury situation that befell the team this year.

Goestenkors has also hauled in two pretty massive recruits in 6-foot-7 post Imani Stafford and top guard Empress Davenport that will join the team. Both bring even more depth to the Texas roster.

Texas women’s athletic director Chris Plonsky has pledged to keep Goestenkors under her current seven-year contract that is set to expire in two seasons, but if Goestenkors doesn’t turn things around in a big way, she could be in jeopardy of losing what she has deemed her “dream job.”

Printed on Monday, March 19, 2012 as: Longhorns failed to reach their potential leaving Goestenkors on coaching hot seat

Strengths:
Experience and smart offensive possessions are the main ingredients in the Longhorns’ recipe to success this postseason. Senior guard Yvonne Anderson seems to be in all-out beast mode after a career night in her last game. If she can limit turnovers and take the wheel in the Longhorns transition offense, Texas has a chance to sneak up on some teams.

Sophomore guard Chassidy Fussell and senior guard Ashleigh Fontenette both benefit when Anderson is playing her best. Fussell is able to spot up and get her shot going and if Anderson can continue to score as much as she has, it takes some of the pressure off of Fussell.

Fontenette seems to feed off Anderson’s energy as well and is able to either run the point when Anderson needs a rest, or play on the wing where she can also knock down deep shots. Coach Gail Goestenkors summed up her thoughts on what her team needs to do to in order to avoid another early exit from the NCAA Tournament.

“I think the seniors have set the tone,” Goestenkors said. “I’m very happy for them because they deserve this, and they wanted to make sure that they will be going to the NCAA Tournament and they’re doing everything in their power to make that happen.”

Weaknesses:
Turnovers have plagued this team from the very first game of the season. Anderson’s recent play has resulted in a considerable drop in turnovers, but the team still averages nearly 16 per game. Turnovers can’t become a hallmark of the Longhorns offense, as mistakes in March are only magnified.

Texas has had some issues rebounding at times this year as well, especially against the nation’s best teams. When a team is getting outrebounded, it tends to start to foul more, which has also been an area of concern for the Longhorns at times. Senior post Ashley Gayle leads the team in Rasheed Wallace’s favorite category: foul outs (five).

Overall, this is a pretty well-rounded team both inside and out of the paint, but Texas has shown a propensity of very streaky shooting performances. The team has shot around 41 percent from the field for the year, but when the shots aren’t falling, the Longhorns can get a little careless with their shot selection. It all goes back to smart decisions on the offensive end as the key to the Longhorns’ postseason survival chances.

Signature wins: Virginia, California, Michigan State, Texas A&M (2), Oklahoma

Bad losses: Texas Tech, Oklahoma, Kansas (2)

Key players:
Fussell, Anderson and Fontenette need to score near their season averages to keep the Longhorns in any game. Players like freshman forward Nneka Enemkpali will have a chance to shine as well. Enemkpali is fresh off a career-high 14-rebound performance against the Aggies and was the Longhorns’ second leading rebounder in conference play at 5.6 boards per game.

“She’s very athletic,” Gayle said of the freshman. “And I think she’s figured out the angles to rebounding and how to rebound at this level. I think she’s doing a great job.”

Gayle herself is also a player to keep an eye on. Gayle is the most experienced, but maybe the least offensively inclined of all the Longhorns post players. She’s averaged about five points and six rebounds this season. But, Gayle averages nearly three blocked shots per game which provides a presence down low that can’t be taken for granted.

Sophomore Chelsea Bass has been a reliable scoring option coming off the bench and has shown explosive attributes with the ball in her hands. Bass has played through some injuries this year, but is second on the team in free-throw percentage (.738).

Quotes to note:

“They hurt us with the guard play,” said A&M head coach Gary Blair after the Aggies’ latest loss to the Longhorns.

“They hurt us with the pick-and-roll. They hurt us with the offensive boards. They hurt us with energy.”

“We’ve started turning the corner, and we’re going in a different direction from the past,” Fontenette said. “I think [the program] is going to definitely build on this going into the next couple of years.”

Yvonne Anderson scans the court during Texas win over Texas A&M. Anderson scored a career-high 25 points in her final home game. The senior helped lead UT past the Aggies in the last scheduled meeting between the two teams.

Photo Credit: Ryan Edwards | Daily Texan Staff

If there’s a lesson to take away from the Longhorns’ win over the soon-to-be out of conference Aggies, it’s that senior guard Yvonne Anderson doesn’t mess around on senior night.

Just ask Texas A&M head coach Gary Blair about how important Anderson is to the Longhorns.

“Anderson played like she was playing for [head coach] Gail [Goestenkors] and her mom and dad today,” confessed Blair. “And that was the biggest key in the ball game.”

The night honoring a team’s senior players comes but once in a player’s career, and Anderson wasn’t going to go out without a bang.

She scored a career-high 25 points to go along with nine assists and three steals. Her nine assists helped set the tone of the game as she continually found her teammates in favorable positions on the court.

To commemorate the special night, Yvonne’s father Mike was able to watch his daughter play at Texas for the first time in her four years with the program.

Anderson served as Missouri’s head coach from 2006-2011 and is now head coach at Arkansas.

Anderson’s dominant performance Sunday afternoon proves that the Longhorns can indeed win over elite teams.

The win marks just the first time since 2004 that the Longhorns have swept the regular season conference series with the Aggies. Before the Longhorns’ win over the Aggies in College Station on Jan. 11 the Aggies had won 11 straight games in the series.

“We know that during the season we didn’t do what we needed to be in, and I think with these last three games we were trying to show that we do deserve to be in,” Anderson said.

Texas ends the regular season on a three-game win streak in conference play, its longest streak in the Big 12 this year. In the final three games, Anderson averaged 16.3 points, 5.6 rebounds and 6.6 assists. Her improved play has helped the Longhorns immensely down the stretch and has opened up more scoring opportunities for her teammates.

“I think all the little things that we’ve have been preaching about like pushing the ball, playing with a sense of urgency, executing and taking care of the ball have really helped us in these last three games,” Anderson said.

Now that the regular season is over, the Longhorns conference record is set in stone at 8-10, which isn’t all that impressive at first glance. Dive a bit deeper and it’s easy to see why the Texas staff thinks an at-large bid is all but a lock at this point.

Of course, there’s still the conference tournament to play.

The Longhorns own the No. 8 seed in the conference tournament and will face No. 9 Texas Tech on Wednesday night.

“We know what our goal is: to get into the NCAA Tournament and obviously progress in the tournament,” Anderson said, “We’ve just been working more on the little things and have been attacking the boards more, had more of a sense of urgency, and we’ve hustled harder.”

Yvonne Anderson scans the court during Texas’ win over Texas A&M. Anderson scored a career-high 25 points in her final home game. The senior helped lead UT past the Aggies in the last scheduled meeting between the two teams.

Photo Credit: Ryan Edwards | Daily Texan Staff

Yvonne Anderson turned in the best performance of her career on Sunday afternoon.

In her final home game as a Longhorn and in Texas' last scheduled meeting with Texas A&M, the senior guard helped Texas keep its NCAA tournament hopes alive.

Anderson had a career-high 25 points and added nine assists and three steals as the Longhorns defeated the Aggies, 79-64, in the final game of the regular season. The win gave Texas head coach Gail Goestenkors her first season sweep of Texas A&M since taking over the program prior to the 2007-2008 season.

“Texas played with a sense of urgency today,” said Texas A&M head coach Gary Blair. “It all starts with guard play, and their guards were just a lot better than ours. [Yvonne] Anderson played like she was playing for mom and dad today. And that was the biggest key in the ball game.”

With his team's regular season schedule complete, Anderson's dad, Mike, who is the head men's basketball coach at Arkansas, got the chance to see his daughter play for the first time this season.

“It's pretty special,” Anderson said before the game. “I don't want to put any more pressure on myself. The fact that he gets to come on our senior night versus A&M is pretty exciting.”

Anderson wasn't the only one to go out in style at the Frank Erwin Center on Sunday.

Ashley Gayle and Ashleigh Fontenette, the other two Texas seniors honored before the game, each played a big role in the victory. Gayle had five rebounds, four points and three steals while Fontenette had 11 points and three assists.

“I'm really proud of the seniors,” Goestenkors said. “They've done a great job when we had our backs against the wall in particular. I'm very happy for them because they deserve this, and they wanted to make sure that they will be going to the NCAA tournament and they're doing everything in their power to make that happen.”

Just a couple of weeks ago, after being blown out by No. 1 Baylor, it looked as if the Longhorns had let their tournament hopes slip away. Texas was a paltry 5-10 in conference play and, with tough opponents like Oklahoma and Texas A&M still left on the schedule, looked to be NIT bound.

But much has changed since then.

The Longhorns have won three in a row, by an average of 18 points each, and may have locked up a spot in the Big Dance.

“We've been playing inspired basketball these last few games,” Goestenkors said. “We're really peaking at the right time.”

With the odds already in their favor, the Longhorns will look to cement their spot in the field of 64 with a strong showing in this weekend's Big 12 Championships in Kansas City. Texas enters the tournament as the eighth seed and will face ninth seeded Texas Tech in the tournament opener on Wednesday evening. The winner of that game will face Baylor on Thursday.

“You don't want to take any chances and put the call into anyone else's hands,” Goestenkors said. “We still feel that we need to go to the tournament and represent and do well.”

Printed on Monday, March 5, 2012 as: UT ends rivalry in style

Chassidy Fussell scans the defense in the Longhorn’s win over Oklahoma on Saturday. The sophomore matched a career-high with 30 points.

Photo Credit: Sa Wang | Daily Texan Staff

Head coach Gail Goestenkors got her 100th victory at Texas as the Longhorns were able to stay in the NCAA Tournament hunt with an 87-62 victory over the Oklahoma Sooners (18-10, 10-6) at the Frank Erwin Center on Saturday.

Goestenkors' milestone victory couldn’t have come at a better time as the Longhorns were in a must-win situation against the Sooners in the annual “Shoot for a Cure” game. With the win, Texas improved to 6-10 in Big 12 play and 16-12 overall.

“The most important win was this win,” Goestenkors said. “I don't care if it’s number 100 or number one, it's the most important one. We played with a sense of urgency that you would expect from a team in our position.”

Texas played with an intensity and work ethic that had been absent during its recent two-game slump. The Longhorns were diving for loose balls, fighting for rebounds and refusing to be outworked from the tip to the final whistle.

“We came out, and we knew our backs were against the wall,” sophomore Chelsea Bass said, who tied her season high with 13 points. “Defensively we worked our butts off. When we work hard and have fun, we're a tough team to stop. We went to work on both ends of the court and we just had fun.”

Led by Yvonne Anderson's career-high eight steals and Ashley Gayle's six blocks, the Longhorns forced 25 turnovers. Texas had 25 points off turnovers compared to the Sooners’ six.

“It’s good for our confidence,” Goestenkors said. “We just worked so hard. This game just showed what can happen for us when we all put forth a supreme effort.”

Texas' performance was by far its strongest against a conference opponent this season. The Longhorns' 87 points were the most they've scored in a Big 12 game this year, and the 25-point margin of victory was their biggest win thus far in league play.

“We came out and set the tone,” Goestenkors said. “It was a tremendous team effort. Everybody really played well, played together and played hard. We were determined tonight, and we sustained that energy for 40 minutes.”

Texas' offensive attack was led by sophomore Chassidy Fussell's career-high 30 points. The sophomore shot 45 percent from the field (10 of 22) and made all seven free throw attempts.

“My teammates were great tonight,” Fussell said. “They know when and where to give me the ball. Yvonne [Anderson] and Ashleigh [Fontenette] were able to find me when I was open. It had a lot to do with my teammates out there tonight.”

Although Fussell stood above the rest, Texas got points from eight of its nine players, including double-digit numbers from Fontenette (18), Bass (13) and Anderson (12). Gayle led the team with six assists.

“We always welcome points from anybody,” Goestenkors said. “We had great balance tonight. One or two people aren't going to win games for us. We need to have balanced scoring, and tonight we did that.”

Brittney Griner goes up for a rebound in a 80-59 thrashing of the Longhorns. Griner, the country’s best center, had another huge game recording 18 points and 10 rebounds in her 100th career game.

Photo Credit: The Associated Press

In need of a signature win to boost their tournament resume, the Longhorns came out flat and found themselves on the wrong end of a milestone performance from Brittney Griner and the No. 1 Baylor Bears (28-0, 15-0 Big 12) on Tuesday night.

The Lady Bears held Texas (15-12, 5-10 Big 12) to a miserable 34 percent shooting, while outscoring the Longhorns 40-26 in the paint, en route to an 80-59 romp at the Ferrell Center in Waco. Griner, playing in her 100th game as a Lady Bear, had 18 points and 10 rebounds to earn her 40th career double-double as Baylor claimed the outright Big 12 regular season title with the victory.

“Baylor proved once again why they’re the No. 1-ranked team in the country,” said head coach Gail Goestenkors. “We did some things defensively that bothered them initially, but they did what they always do and they adjusted and went on a run. They found a way, and that’s what great teams do.”

Griner, who was recognized in a pre-game ceremony after becoming the fourth Lady Bear to reach the 2000 career point threshold, opened the scoring with a layup at 19:31 in the first half and the Lady Bears held onto the lead the rest of the way.

The 6’8” junior made her presence felt on the defensive end all night, blocking four shots while altering several others.

“[Griner] definitely makes you want to shoot more outside shots,” said senior Texas guard Yvonne Anderson. “As a guard, she intimidates you to the point where you want to shoot outside. Our posts don’t really look to score versus her. It’s just an intimidation factor.”

Texas’ starting post combination of Anne Marie Hartung and Ashley Gayle failed to record a point, missing all six of their field goals, and pulled down a measly nine total rebounds. The other two bigs for the Longhorns, Cokie Reed and Nneka Enemkpali combined to score just five points off the bench.

With Griner causing so many problems inside, Texas’ guards were forced to take a lot of outside shots and struggled to find their stroke.

Senior guard Ashleigh Fontenette had 10 points on 4-16 shooting for the Longhorns. Chassidy Fussell also failed to get it going, shooting a mere 5-21 from the field and just 3-10 from behind the arc.

“They play excellent team defense,” Goestenkors said. “Brittney [Griner] gets a lot of credit for blocking and changing shots inside, but it’s their perimeter defense that sets the tone.”

Defensively, Texas struggled to rebound the ball. The Lady Bears used the mismatch in size and strength to their advantage on the offensive glass, tallying 21 second-chance points on 19 offensive rebounds.

“Even when their shots weren’t falling early, they found a way to get the offensive rebounds,” Goestenkors said. “We weren’t finishing the shot with a rebound.”

The Longhorns now have their work cut out for them if they hope to make the “Big Dance.” Texas is going to have to win each of its last three games against Oklahoma, Missouri and Texas A&M, and have a couple bubble teams lose, to have any chance at being in this year’s NCAA tournament field.

“We have to let this one go and get ready for Oklahoma,” Anderson said. “There’s nothing we can change now. We can just learn from the little things that we haven’t been doing the whole season and commit to doing them against Oklahoma.”

Printed on Wednesday, February 22, 2012 as: Longhorns squashed by top ranked Lady Bears

Preview

Photo Credit: Rebeca Rodriguez | Daily Texan Staff

Coming off another 20-plus point performance where she connected on a career-high five 3-pointers, sophomore guard Chassidy Fussell knows that it takes more than just a hot shooting night to win games in the Big 12.

“You can play offense all you want,” Fussell said. “But if you don’t get stops you aren’t going to win the game.”

That caveat rings true after the Longhorns’ most recent conference loss to Kansas State. At 3-6 in conference play Texas now finds itself six games behind the Big 12 leader, No. 1 Baylor. The Longhorns have now lost six of their last nine games and are quickly fading from the NCAA Tournament picture.

The next stop on the Longhorns’ schedule takes them to Ames, Iowa to face the Cyclones. The last time these two teams met in Austin on Jan. 18, Texas escaped with a 62-60 win on a buzzer-beating shot from senior guard Yvonne Anderson.

The Cyclones also own a 3-6 record in the Big 12 and, like the Longhorns, have been in some closely contested games lately. The Cyclones’ most recent loss came at the hands of No. 13 Texas A&M. The Aggies were almost upset, but emerged victorious, 66-64. The Cyclones had lost five straight games after the Longhorns ousted them in Austin, but have won three of their last four, so they are starting to figure things out.

“Every team in our league has gone through winning streaks and losing streaks,” said head coach Gail Goestenkors. “You find out what you’re made of when you go through adversity, and this team always responds to adversity.”

Texas has struggled getting the ball to its posts recently, but Goestenkors has made it clear that this will become a focus for her team as the season wears on.

“I think what Coach (Goestenkors) said — having a post presence — is important,” said senior guard Ashleigh Fontenette. “We’re going to have to work on that more.”

The Longhorns held the Cyclones to 35 percent shooting in their first meeting, and will have to keep the Cyclones off the glass if they are to win in Ames. Fussell also scored 20 points in that first matchup Jan. 18, and could be in line for another big night. She’ll need help from Anderson and her post players as well.

“We also have to get to the offensive glass more because offensive rebounds will get you more points as well,” Goestenkors said.

Printed on Friday, February 3, 2012 as: Fussell hopes to lead team out of drought

Chassidy Fussell (24) looks to drive past an outstretched Tiger defender. Fussell notched 22 points to lead all scorers in this contest.

Photo Credit: Elisabeth Dillon | Daily Texan Staff

After struggling to find their rhythm in Norman, the Longhorn guards were not about to be outplayed at home on Wednesday night.

The Texas backcourt combined to score 54 of the team’s 75 points while committing only seven turnovers en route to a 75-58 victory over the Missouri Tigers.

“I thought our guards were very determined,” said head coach Gail Goestenkors. “That’s what you want to see from your team and your guards in particular. They have the ball in their hands a lot of the time and they set the tone. When they play with that kind of focus, we’re going to have a good game.”

Sophomore standout Chassidy Fussell led all scorers with 22 points on eight of 12 shooting. It was Fussell’s 17th double-digit showing in 19 games this year and the seventh time this season that the second-year guard has scored more than 20 points.

“I thought Chassidy put the nail in the coffin for us,” Goestenkors said. “Her back-to-back buckets down the stretch sealed the win for us.”

Senior point guard Yvonne Anderson, who is averaging 15.7 points per game in the team’s last three outings, continued to show great poise while running the offense.

Anderson tied her season high with six rebounds to go with 18 points and six assists in
the contest.

“Yvonne knows that when other people are hitting she has to get them the ball,” Goestenkors said. “But she also understands that there are times when she needs to be one of our top scorers.

She’s done a great job of accepting and understanding her role on this team.”

Leading by only five after a rough first half, Goestenkors lit up her team’s locker room with a fiery half-time speech that proved to be just what the Longhorns needed as motivation for a strong second half.

“It was a mix of coach G’s pep talk and us not wanting to give them much help,” Anderson said. “We’ve had games where we’ve struggled to put away teams and the result hasn’t been what we wanted. Tonight we wanted to put it away and give ourselves a chance to have fun out there.”

Missouri’s second year head coach Robin Pingeton knew how dominant the Texas guards could be, but found them to be better than advertised.

“We’ve never question their ability,” Pingeton said. “They’ve got some tremendous perimeter players with high basketball IQ, discipline, poise and the ability to attack off the dribble.”

Printed on Thursday, January 26, 2012 as: 'Determined' guards avenge past failures, score 54 total points

Preview

Freshman forward Nneka Enemkpali has played well for Texas filling in for the injured Cokie Reed. She has averaged 7.5 points and 5 rebounds earning her Big 12 Freshman of the Week.

Photo Credit: Elisabeth Dillon | Daily Texan Staff

At 0-6 in Big 12 play, the Missouri Tigers are in sole possession of last place in the conference. The Longhorns aren’t too far ahead.

Texas is just 2-4 in the conference and finds itself at eighth in the Big 12 standings. The Longhorns must begin to string wins together, as their season has begun to take a southward turn.

In its last 10 games, Texas has gone 6-4, losing three home games in that stretch.

It’s been noted that each and every Big 12 game has the potential to be close, and while that’s true, Missouri is by far the worst team in the conference. The Tigers have yet to defeat a top-50 RPI team and have lost six of their last 10 games.

This will mark the 23rd overall meeting between the teams, with Texas holding a 20-2 advantage over Missouri. The Longhorns are also a perfect 11-0 at home against the Tigers.

“It’s great to say that you’re able to prove it on the floor,” said senior guard Yvonne Anderson. “It’s one of the things that [assistant] coach [Edwina] Brown has been saying: ‘Enough talking. Put it into action.’”

Lately the Longhorns have enjoyed excellent play from freshman forward Nneka Enemkpali. After filling in for the injured Cokie Reed and in turn seeing her minutes per game increase, Enemkpali has shown marked improvement in many areas.

In her last two games (also her first two career starts) against Iowa State and Oklahoma, Enemkpali has averaged 7.5 points, five rebounds and two blocks, as well as almost recording a double-double during the Horns’ loss to the Sooners.

She recently earned her first league honor when she was named last week’s Big 12 Co-Freshman of the Week.

“She shows great signs and she’s just going to get better and better,” said senior post Reed.

Oddly enough, the two Tiger players the Longhorns will have to keep an eye on are both Texas natives. Seniors Christine Flores and BreAnna Brock are both from the San Antonio area and also lead their team in scoring.

Flores averages over 18 points and seven rebounds a game, making her the de facto go-to-girl. Brock isn’t too bad either, averaging over 15 points and eight rebounds herself.

The pair is shooting a combined 50-percent from the field and average over 30 minutes played per game. The problem is that no one else really does much in the way of scoring for the Tigers, so teams are able to key on Flores and Brock and not worry about anyone else making them pay.

If the Longhorns can shut down Flores and Brock, while not allowing for anyone else to hurt them, this game should go their way. If not, fans could be in store for a show as the Tigers are hungry for their first conference win.

Printed on Wednesday, January 25, 2012 as: Horns look to start upswing vs. Tigers

Yvonne Anderson (12) drives to the basket in the second half against Iowa State. Anderson scored 14 points to help Texas beat the Cyclones.

Photo Credit: Elisabeth Dillon | Daily Texan Staff

After silencing a late rally by the Cyclones, the Longhorns had one final opportunity to put them away for good. With the game tied at 60 and under 20 seconds to go in the second half, senior guard Yvonne Anderson found herself at the top of the key and only one option left — to take the game’s last shot. Chassidy Fussell had a solid game from the field and would have been the likely candidate to hoist a last-second shot in hopes of converting, but the Cyclones had already wrapped her up defensively and it was all up to Anderson.

After running into a wall as she drove left, Anderson backed up and went right back at the heart of the defense, this time making sure she had enough room to get a shot off. She released a floater from about 10 feet out and after a quick meeting with the backboard, the ball found the bottom of the net. Suddenly there was a sign of life from the fans in the Frank Erwin Center, but more importantly the Longhorns.

“Those are the kind of moments you live for,” Anderson said . “Even though I made the shot, I still would rather win by 10 or 12 points.”

“Me too,” said head coach Gail Goestenkors.

The Longhorns can breathe a little easier now that this game is behind them, but Goestenkors and her team know that this won’t be the last Big 12 game to go down to the wire.

“We knew it would be a great battle,” Goestenkors said. “In this conference you just have to find a way to win.”

Anderson certainly found her way. In addition to her game-winner she also shot 6-8 from the field, including 1-2 from beyond the arc to total 14 points for the game. For the 33 minutes she was in the game, Anderson did an excellent job of keeping Texas composed and limited mistakes in order to keep her team in the game. Her eight assists helped spread the floor and create open shots and her four steals got the team in transition early and often. Anderson even added three rebounds for good measure.

“[Yvonne] really dictated the flow of the game,” said Cyclones head coach Bill Fennelly. “She did a great job of gutting the defense a lot. That’s what good players do at big times.”

The Longhorns can definitely build upon this win and have a lot to be proud of after pulling this game out in the waning seconds. Anderson’s improved play has allowed Texas to put the ball in her hands and have her control of the offense. And now that she’s proven she can hit a big shot it also gives the team another option late in games. This won’t be the last you hear from Anderson.