Oklahoma basketball: Arkansas holds off Sooners 81-78

Razorbacks' Marshawn Powell scores career-high 33 points, breaks up final play as Sooners fall.
by Stephanie Kuzydym Published: December 4, 2012
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photo - Oklahoma's Isaiah Cousins (11) looks to pass as Arkansas' BJ Young, right, and Hunter Mickelson, rear center, defend during the first half of an NCAA college basketball game in Fayetteville, Ark., Tuesday, Dec. 4, 2012. (AP Photo/Gareth Patterson) ORG XMIT: ARGP102
Oklahoma's Isaiah Cousins (11) looks to pass as Arkansas' BJ Young, right, and Hunter Mickelson, rear center, defend during the first half of an NCAA college basketball game in Fayetteville, Ark., Tuesday, Dec. 4, 2012. (AP Photo/Gareth Patterson) ORG XMIT: ARGP102

With 40.2 seconds to go, Pledger drained a 3-pointer from the right side of the court to cut Oklahoma's deficit to 77-75. About 20 seconds later, on Oklahoma's next possession, he drained another 3 — this time from the left side of the arc — to give Oklahoma its first lead since the game's opening minutes at 78-77.

Arkansas guard B.J. Young answered six seconds later with a layup to give Arkansas the lead again. The Sooners then fouled Powell. He made both shots to give Arkansas an 81-77 lead with two seconds left.

That's when the inbound pass from Neal to Osby came. It was play drawn up by Kruger that was supposed to find Osby on the right side of the court. Osby was supposed to make a quick catch-and-release to Pledger for a 3.

Osby never got to catch the ball.

He sat on the left side of Kruger in the postgame press conference with his fist balled up covering his mouth, while Pledger sat with his head in both his hands. Both seniors' eyes glazed over as their coach spoke.

“We've got to be much more physical with loose balls around the rim and second-shot opportunities, late shot-clock opportunities that we didn't quite sustain right through the finish,” Kruger said. “Just more committed, more aggressive, more physical. We've got a few days to work on all that but the good thing is this is a great group of workers as far as attitudes goes and they'll want to get better.”

by Stephanie Kuzydym
Reporter
Stephanie Kuzydym learned at a young age that life is a game of inches. That's just one reason why she loves football. Kuzydym joined The Oklahoman in July 2012. Before arriving in the state, Kuzydym was an intern for the sports departments at...
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