By Dylan Gehlbach
The fuel is in the tank, and Bonnie Henrickson has her foot on the gas pedal. The Lady Jayhawks look like they’re ready to make a run.
The Kansas Lady Jayhawks took out the 22nd-ranked Oklahoma Sooners Sunday to move into a tie with Oklahoma State for fifth place in the Big 12. With another quality win over a ranked team and four games won out of the last six in the demanding Big 12, Kansas has a chance to make a strong end to the season.
Kansas has five games remaining in the season: a road game at Texas, home against a tough Texas Tech team, on the road against 24th-ranked Iowa State and Oklahoma and a home game against TCU. These are all winnable games for Kansas.
If Bonnie Henrickson plays her cards right, she can create the type of team that nobody will want to play come tournament time. Angel Goodrich and Carolyn Davis are leading the Jayhawks with 13.0 and 15.3 points per game, respectively. Goodrich has also created for her teammates throughout the season. She posts a staggering 6.6 assists per game and set the Kansas assist record in the game against Oklahoma. Kansas has also found help in players like Monica Engelman, Natalie Knight and Chelsea Gardner, who have steadily contributed all season.
If Kansas can play a solid five games, they could enter the Big 12 tournament posed to create chaos for teams like Oklahoma State and even Baylor. A good run in the Big 12 tournament, either to the semifinals or the finals, would make the Jayhawks a significant threat heading into the NCAA Tournament. It’s the teams that are on fire that make the biggest noise in the postseason.
There are a lot of if’s in this scenario, but this is a team that has been proving itself to be a group of fighters as of late. With multiple comeback wins in their last four wins, this team has the attitude to win in pressure situations.
After all, we know what the Jayhawks did last year in the tournament without Carolyn Davis. Without a doubt, there will be high hopes for this Kansas team come March.