The Oklahoman

Five things to know about Miami, the OSU women’s NCAA Tournament foe

- Scott Wright

STILLWATER — The Oklahoma State women's basketball team will make its return to the NCAA Tournament as a No. 8 seed, facing off against ninth-seeded Miami in the first round at Assembly Hall in Bloomingto­n, Indiana.

The game is set for Saturday with the tip time to be determined.

Here are five things to know about the Miami Hurricanes.

Chasing 20th win

Miami (19-12) is sitting a win shy of 20 entering the NCAA Tournament after going 11-7 in the Atlantic Coast Conference.

The Hurricanes come in having won three of their last seven games, going 1-1 in the ACC Tournament with a win over Boston College and a loss to Virginia Tech.

This will be Miami's 16th appearance in the NCAA Tournament and 10th under coach Katie Meier, who is in her 18th season leading the program.

Meier has 419 career victories and a 343-222 record at Miami.

Influentia­l twins

Beyond basketball, the biggest news Miami has made this year has been in the name, image and likeness game.

Twin sisters Haley and Hanna Cavinder are social media influencers.

A report by Forbes last July says the 21-year-old twins have approximat­ely $1.7 million in NIL deals thanks to their social media reach that includes more than 4 million followers on TikTok plus another million-plus on other platforms.

Transfers from Fresno State, one of the reasons they came to Miami was to go to an NCAA Tournament, and here they are.

Counting on offense

The Hurricanes rely heavily on their offense to win games. Over their past five victories, they've averaged 75.6 points per game.

Over their past five losses, they've averaged 51.8.

Similar to OSU, Miami relies on a variety of players for offense, with five players averaging between 6.9 and 12.6 points per game.

Haley Cavinder, a 5-foot-6 guard, leads the way at 12.6 with 4.7 rebounds and 2.5 assists per game. Destiny Harden averages 12.0 points and a team-best 5.8 rebounds.

Turned over

One key area where Miami could attack the Cowgirls is with its ability to force turnovers.

While OSU has been strong in taking care of the ball this season, averaging 13.3 turnovers per game, that has been a prickly situation lately.

Over the last five games, in which OSU has gone 1-4, it has turned the ball over 16.6 times per game.

As a team, Miami is forcing opponents into 17.0 turnovers per game while giving up 63.8 points per game, well short of OSU's season average of 75.8.

The Cowgirls are shooting 45.3% from the floor and 36.6% from 3-point range, while Miami is allowing teams to shoot 41.6% and 31.7%, respective­ly.

A common opponent

OSU and Miami had only one crossover in their schedules, but it won't tell you much more than you already know about this matchup — it's a tight one.

Both teams played Florida State this season. Miami split, losing 92-85 at Florida State, then winning 86-82 at home.

OSU defeated Florida State 79-77 in the sixth game of the year, over Thanksgivi­ng weekend, at the Women's Cancun Challenge.

It was the first big win of the season for OSU, with Florida State later climbing into the top 25.

 ?? RHONA WISE, AP ?? Miami's Haley Cavinder (14) and her twin sister, Hanna, are social media influencer­s with a reported $1.7 million in NIL deals.
RHONA WISE, AP Miami's Haley Cavinder (14) and her twin sister, Hanna, are social media influencer­s with a reported $1.7 million in NIL deals.
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