A Triple-Double: SWOSU Women's Basketball Team Features Three Sets Of Twins
Basketball teams don't often see their players put up triple-doubles, but the women's team at Southwestern Oklahoma State University sees it every day.
SaRaya and MaRiah Oyler, Sarina and Taryn Sayama, and Brooklyn and Britton Scott all play for Kelsi Musick's Lady Bulldogs. All three sets of sisters are twins.
The Oylers and Scotts are from Beaver and Duncan, respectively. The Sayamas are from Hanford, California.
"It's really fun playing with another set of twins because before we'd never really done it and they know exactly where we're coming from," MaRiah Oyler said. "We compare stories. They know how we feel which is really unusual for most people."
This is the first time the Oylers have played with another set of twins, but the Sayamas and Scotts have done it before. It's a first for all of them to be part of a triple-twin team.
Musick said she likes having twins on her team because it raises the level of competition among the players. The sisters are not afraid to challenge one another.
"I like the dynamic of coaching twins because they always have a partner to push each other," Musick said. "That competitive nature I like because sometimes you get the buddy system whenever you're coaching because they're friends and they don't want to hurt each other. But with twins they'll hurt each other's feelings because they're used to each other and they're OK with it because they also know they will get over it."
On the court, telling the sisters apart can be difficult for those who don't know them as well. Musick said she has no problem, but for fans and opponents it's not always easy. Taryn Sayama said opponents often get confused when she's on the court with her sister and, if it weren't for their numbers, they wouldn't know which player was which.
"Me and my sister will be in at the same time and the players will get confused and start arguing about who is covering whom," she said. "They don't realize that we're twins until they see us together."
Musick said she didn't set out to recruit three sets of twin sisters, but it's something she sees as a positive because of how well the Oyler twins developed together. SaRaya is currently the second leading scorer on the team averaging 11.4 points per game. MaRiah averages 8.7 points per game and is an 81 percent free throw shooter.
"They have a sixth sense about them and they know where the other person is going to be, whereas that takes a while to develop over a course of time with just teammates," she said. "You sometimes get that out of a point guard or a post player but it's already in them. It's in their makeup as a twin. They know what the other one needs, when the other one needs it. It's easier to get more out of them."
The other sets of twins are also developing together. The Sayamas are juniors and are reserves off the bench at this point in their careers. Taryn averages 5.6 points per game and Sarina averages 2.6. The Scotts both redshirted this year as freshmen.
The Oylers are seniors and will soon be graduating. Like the other two set of twins, they share the same major as their sister. The Oylers are business management majors. They said they plan to stay in Weatherford to get their master's degrees and start the process of landing a job.
Life after college is a transition for everyone. These sisters will no doubt lean on each other like they always have during this time as they find jobs and begin their careers.
For all three sets of sisters, they will also always have special memories from one year in college when they had four other teammates who knew exactly what it was like to be them.