411OnTheForty: Women’s basketball No. 17 in AP poll; Gaston honored

07 Jan By
College World Series
Freshman forward DeYona Gaston was named Big 12 Freshman of the Week for her performances that helped the Texas women's basketball team climb to No. 17 in the new Associated Press poll (photo courtesy of texassports.com).

AUSTIN, Texas — The Texas women's basketball team continues to climb the hypothetical mountain of the Associated Press top 25 poll, nearing the summit with each week that passes.

The AP announced Monday that head coach Vic Schaefer's squad had moved up two spots, from No. 19 to No. 17.

The improved ranking is the reward for what is now a five-game winning streak for the Longhorns. Texas took down Lamar in a midweek battle before taking it to a solid Iowa State team this past Sunday in Austin to advance to 2-0 in Big 12 play and 8-1 overall.

Texas continues to be just one of two ranked teams from the Big 12, with Baylor at No. 6. Iowa State received just two votes from the AP voters this week.

Gaston honored by Big 12
Additionally, freshman forward DeYona Gaston stepped up in Lauren Ebo's absence, averaging 15.5 points and 9.5 rebounds per game on her way to being named Big 12 Freshman of the Week. She also had five blocks and three steals in the two victories combined. The honor is the first of its kind that Gaston has received while on the Forty Acres.

The Longhorns have a few days to rest, recover and prepare before traveling up to Morgantown, W.Va., to battle the West Virginia Mountaineers at 5 p.m. (Central time) Saturday. This will mark UT's longest road trip of the season. West Virginia is 1-2 in conference play, and 7-2 overall this season.

Riley Zayas is a high school sophomore and freelance journalist from Round Rock, Texas. He began his journalism career as a Sports Illustrated Kids reporter and has since become a regular contributor to Horns Illustrated, covering Texas Longhorn sports. His work also includes Fellowship of Christian Athletes publications, College Baseball Nation and Sports Spectrum, a national christian sports website. He currently serves as the Managing Editor of True To The Cru, covering UMHB athletics. Twitter: @ZayasRiley