Oklahoma State made 1 of 14 shots from the beyond the 3-point line in its 81-75 win over Oklahoma on Saturday, continuing a hot-and-cold trend of long-range shooting.
The one make, however: “Huge,” said OSU coach Travis Ford.
The Cowboys hadn't yet led and were down 49-48 when Keiton Page fired in a 3 to send OSU in front to stay.
“Coach just drew up the play,” said Page, 1-of-7 from long range. “We ran a flare screen for me. I got an open look and it went in. It gave us some momentum, got the crowd into it.”
Said Ford: “I was wanting to do something with some punch. He's the guy to do it usually.”
OU'S BENCH STEPS UP
Because of foul trouble, OU reserves scored 17 points, the most by the bench since a pre-Christmas win over Sacramento State.
Forward Barry Honore had scored only 17 points all season, hadn't played the past five games and logged only five minutes in conference play.
Honore played 13 Bedlam minutes and scored on three putback, tip-ins to match his season high (six points) he scored in November against Chaminade. Tyler Neal also scored six points off the bench.
"Our foul trouble hurt us," said OU coach Jeff Capel. "We had some odd lineups in there, but I thought our bench was terrific."
BOTH COACHES GET TECHNICALS
Capel was assessed a technical less than six minutes into the second half. Ford received a technical call less than seven minutes into the game when the Sooners built their largest lead (21-6).
"At that point I was mad at everybody, refs, players, everybody," Ford said. "I think (the players) got the message. It wasn't planned. Sometimes you plan to get one. I was just upset. I was upset the way we were playing. I think it did ignite a little bit of a fire."
One of the more intriguing matchups paired OSU's Jéan-Paul Olukemi and OU's Cameron Clark, two athletic guards capable of going off for big scoring games.
Clark, who led the Sooners with 25 points in Wednesday's win over Baylor, failed to score against OSU. Olukemi made just 4 of 14 shots from the floor, but went 11-of-13 from the foul line to lead all scorers with 19 points.
“He's a great player,” Olukemi said of Clark. “I take pride in not letting people come in here and score on me at will. I think I just made an emphasis today to pay attention to the scouting report and take away his strengths. He can drive to the basket, he's athletic, he can get offensive rebounds.
“I tried to focus on what he can do and take that away from him.”
The Cowboys defended better overall in the second half, due to several switches. Ford praised Markel Brown's work on Cade Davis and Matt Pilgrim's job on Andrew Fitzgerald, after the two Sooners had combined for 25 first-half points.
“I loved our defense the second half,” Ford said. “They were getting totally different shots in the second half, and that's what we were looking for.”
Pilgrim played 23 minutes off the bench, finishing with six points and four rebounds. But Ford said he did much more.
“I thought Matt Pilgrim was terrific, absolutely terrific. He may not have the glamour stat line, but what he did for us defensively, because Fitzgerald was having his way in the first half. What he did on him, what he did when we started doubling the post, what he did on rebounding, screening wise, I thought Matt did some really good things.”
DAVIS' FINAL GALLAGHER-IBA GAME
Davis, from Elk City, knows the significance of the Bedlam rivalry. He ended up splitting four games in Stillwater. The Sooners won his freshman and sophomore years but lost the last two. Davis scored 18 points.
"This being my last one you want to come in and have a good game," Davis said. "But I'd take a win and not have any points. It is what it is. We have to learn from this. We have to make sure we're tougher. We can't be satisfied with our four wins or be happy with the lead we had."
MASON BACK IN OKLAHOMA
Former OSU star Desmond Mason, who retired from the NBA last year, has moved his family to Oklahoma City from Portland. Mason is a spokesman for First Fidelity Bank. Mason has attended half of OSU's home games this season and spent much of halftime chatting with booster Boone Pickens.
"It feels good to be back in Oklahoma," Mason said. "Obviously, I'm a coach (Eddie) Sutton guy. But I like Travis Ford. He's going a good job. It takes a while to pick up a new system but he's going to get the program back to where it was."