Kansas women’s basketball sits at a perfect 7-0 on the season. And when a team goes seven games averaging 78.4 points per game, it needs contributions from multiple players.
While the Jayhawks have just one player in the Top 20 in scoring in the Big 12 — sophomore guard Aniya Thomas ranks 18th in the conference, averaging 13 points per game — they have five players averaging double-digit points.
Thomas scored a career-high 19 points against FAU last week, helping the Jayhawks win the FAU Thanksgiving Tournament.
What’s more, in five of the first seven games this season, a different player has led the team in scoring.
In the first game of the season against Indiana State, freshman guard Holly Kersgieter led the way with 24 points, shooting 4-of-7 from the three-point line.
Kersgieter has also reached double-digit scoring in each of her last three games.
Her three-point shooting also leads the Jayhawks, as she is shooting at a 41.4% clip (12-for-29) to open the season.
Along with Kersgieter, fellow freshman guard Zakiyah Franklin is averaging 11.4 points per game and leads the team with 3.9 assists per game.
The experience Franklin and Kersgieter are gaining this season is valuable, especially before Big 12 play. It’s also helping the team increase their chances to play in the NCAA tournament for the first time since the 2012-13 season.
It’s important for the Jayhawks to stack up non-conference wins to bolster their resume for the NCAA tournament, and Kansas is already off on the right foot.
Another sign of the Jayhawks’ depth is the amount of players who play significant minutes. Seven players have played at least 20 minutes per game for Kansas, which gives coach Brandon Schneider a better chance to see what he has heading into conference play.
The depth can be important in case of an injury as well.
Junior forward Tina Stephens is among those playing over 20 minutes a game, averaging 10.1 points per game. However, her ability to rebound could be her biggest asset for the Jayhawks.
Before transferring to Kansas, Stephens averaged 7.8 rebounds per game at Florida Southwestern State. So far this season, she's improved to nine rebounds per game.
If she continues at that pace, she can eliminate opportunities for second-chance points for the opposition and more chances on offense, as she leads the team with 24 offensive rebounds.
The Jayhawks will look to remain undefeated as Kansas takes on Florida Sunday, Dec. 8 at 2 p.m. in the Big 12/SEC challenge.