Romero Osby scored 17 points to lead Oklahoma past Oklahoma State 77-68 Saturday afternoon at the Lloyd Noble Center. Buddy Hield and Amath M’Baye added 15 points apiece as the Sooners improve to 11-3 and 2-0 in the Big 12 Conference.
"It was a good ball game,” said Oklahoma Coach Lon Kruger. “I thought the guys had good energy from the start, moved the ball well and had pretty good activity on loose balls. We withstood the run by Oklahoma State there in the second half and gained our composure pretty well at that point and made good plays for each other down the stretch. It was a little sloppy there late, but we will learn from that and hopefully get better. Overall, it was a good win for us and we beat a really good ball club. Oklahoma State is a really good team and any time we can beat a good club like that, we feel good about it."
The Sooners never trailed and the game was never tied. OU led by as many as 14 points (in each half) before OSU used a 17-5 run to make the score 52-50 with 9:34 remaining. The Sooners later used a 12-3 spurt to retake command, 70-57, with 4:00 to go.
The Sooners are 2-0 in Big 12 play for the first time since 2009, when they started 11-0 behind eventual national player of the year Blake Griffin.
"We had a great crowd and that is always important,” said Kruger. “Something we want to continue to do is build that base, and I think this group is really easy to watch, fun to cheer for, and they work hard. When a crowd like that comes and sees good results, good effort, and sees a group that works hard, hopefully that will encourage them to come back and we will keep building on it."
Osby finished with a team-high 17 points on 6-for-12 field goal and 5-for-6 free throw shooting. The free throw miss came on his last attempt, snapping a streak of 36 straight makes. Osby finished one free throw shy of tying the school record for consecutive conversions (37 by Nate Carter in 2006-07). In three career games vs. OSU, Osby is averaging 17.0 points on .500 field goal shooting.
"We're just trying to learn from last year and bring some of the new guys along with us,” said Osby. “We've got five seniors, so we know how it is being in close Big 12 games and having to come down the stretch and just don't make enough plays to win the game. So it's been big for us; I think it's been good because coach scheduled a lot of road games for us early in the year, forcing us to play with our backs against the wall. I'd like to think we've gotten better since then."
Oklahoma improved to 129-94 all-time against Oklahoma State and to 81-26 in Norman. The Sooners have won 11 of the last 17 overall meetings and are 19-17 against OSU since the start of the Big 12 Conference.
Oklahoma is back home again on Wednesday when it hosts Texas Tech at 7 p.m. CT.