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Matchup: Wabara vs. Augustus

Baylor's Abiola Wabara vs. LSU's Seimone Augustus

Sunday, April 3, 2005; Page E10

The Lady Bears are fully aware of what Augustus is capable of doing: The 6-foot-1 junior scored a career-high 33 points and made 14 of 21 shots in LSU's 71-70 victory over Baylor on Nov. 14.

"I said it when we played them back in November that she's the best player in the game today," Baylor Coach Kim Mulkey-Robertson said. "And my mind has not changed."

(Rogelio Solis -- AP)

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Augustus's tournament averages (19.5 points on 49.2 percent shooting) have dipped slightly from her season averages (20.1 points on 54.7 percent shooting). She can create her shot almost at will, whether it's off the dribble or pulling up in a defender's face.

The Lady Bears have something this time around they didn't when the teams met in November: Wabara. The 6-foot sophomore from Parma, Italy, played just six minutes in the first meeting, but has emerged as Baylor's defensive stopper over the second half of the season. She combines great length (77-inch wingspan) with great strength (team-best bench press of 165 pounds).

Wabara has already held one all-American, Minnesota forward Janel McCarville, to a sub-par performance (6-for-16 shooting in the region semifinal), but she realizes that the smooth Augustus has very different strengths than the big, strong McCarville.

"She has all the skills," Wabara said of Augustus. "I'm going to try to not foul, first of all, and then play hard defense and keep her away from the basket and away from the ball."

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