(Updated at end of game)
Senior forward Romero Osby scored a career high 29 points to go with 8 rebounds to lead Oklahoma to a 73-67 win over Big 12 rival Texas, giving the Longhorns (8-10) an 0-6 mark for the first time in their Big 12 history. The Sooners improved to 13-4 and 4-1 with their 6th win in seven games.
Junior Amath M’Baye threw down three spectacular dunks via the lob and finished with 15 points and 5 rebounds. Freshman Buddy Hield was also in double figures with 12 points, as Oklahoma shot 48 percent from the field against the nation’s number two FG% defense.
The Longhorns narrowed a double digit second half deficit to four points when Cameron Ridley’s three made it 69-65 with 1:00 to play. before the Sooners closed out the win. Oklahoma next plays Saturday at Kansas.
Sheldon McClellan came off the bench to score 25 to lead the Longhorns, who host Texas Tech Saturday night, January 26th.
(Updated 10:22 pm)
M’Baye’s electrifying leaping ability led to at least three lob slams, including one from Sam Grooms on the break to give Oklahoma a 63-55 lead at 4:20. With Osby taking a breather, Texas threatened to close the gap before Hield’s strong left side baseline bucket gave Oklahoma an 11 pt lead with 3:05 to play.
Updated 10:14 pm
OU 59-52 6:43 remaining)
The Sooners finally hit a couple of threes, one each for Osby and freshman Jelon Hornbeak to keep the surging Longhorns at a distance. Texas’ biggest weapon is the sneaky scorer Sheldon McClellan, who leads them off the bench. He had 21 of his team’s first 52 points.
(Updated 10:07 pm)
Osby’s two free throws at 9:31 in game equals his career high at OU with 24 pts.
(Updated A 10:04 pm) As the Longhorns’ young big men wore down, Oklahoma’s most reliable scorer up front began to go to school. Senior Romero Osby set his sights on his career high of 24 points, scoring 22 in the first 28:00 to help OU push their lead to 12 at 50-38 with 11:14 to play.
(Updated 9:55 pm OU 45-36)
One of the most spectacular plays of the game came when the Sooners defense allowed them to run. Veteran floor leader Steven Pledger partially blocked a Longhorn attempt, ran with. The loose ball and found a soaring, streaking M’Baye for a slam that gave the Sooners their biggest lead at 9 pts.
(Updated at 9:50 pm with OU leading 38-34)
Texas defense limited the Sooners perimeter attempts. Averaging more than 15trey tries a game, OU was 0-3 in first 24 minutes. Their fewest three point attempts in a game this year came in a one point win at Oral Roberts (2 of 10).
(Updated at 9:40 start of second half)
Big stat from first half? Texas’ bench out scores OU’s 20-2 in the first half.
(First Half updated at 9:29 pm) Buddy Hield’s early lob to Amath M’Baye brought the “Cheer Like A Champion” t-shirt wearing crowd to their feet early, as Oklahoma (12-4, 3-1)built an early lead. But the game never got rolling until the Longhorns (8-9, 0-4) tried to muscle up on OU.
Neither team has enough size to say they can go “big”, but Texas tried with three freshmen wide bodies, 6-9 Cameron Ridley, 6-10 Prince Ibeh and 6-9 freshman Conner Lammert They overcame an 8-4 deficit with a 9-2 run to take a 13-10 lead midway through the first half.
What Texas is best at is denial. They led the NCAA in 3 pt fg% defense coming into the game and were second in overall fg% defense (.345), which works best when you don’t allow second shots, which they accomplished until the closing minutes of the half.
Once OU got into an offensive rhythm, they weren’t missing their first shots, thanks mainly to the inside work of leading scorer Romero Osby. He had 14 points at half on 5 of 8 shooting as the Sooners took a 30-26 lead to the break.