Bears Hold On to Beat Sooners
(Kansas City, MO)—
The Oklahoma Sooners were eliminated from the Big 12 men’s basketball championship when Baylor used a fast start and held off OU to win 78-73 in Kansas City. The Sooners trailed 10-0 just 3 minutes into the game and never really recovered. After trailing by as many as 21 points with 17 minutes left to play in the game, the Sooners finally put up a fight. And when Buddy Hield drilled a “3” with 1:29 remaining, Oklahoma trailed 72-68 and Baylor promptly turned the ball over on their end of the court. But Jordan Woodard missed a wide open “3” from the right wing with 1:00 left which would’ve cut the Bears lead down to a single point…and the Bears held on after that.
Baylor shot 55% from the field in the opening half and 50% for the game. All 5 starters scored in double figures for the Bears, who beat OU for the first time in 3 meetings this season. Isaiah Austin led Baylor with 18, Cory Jefferson added 14 and Royce O’Neale, Kenny Cherry and Brady Heslip each scored 12 points apiece.
For the Sooners, Cameron Clark led the way with 19 points, Hield had 15 but only hit 3-10 from behind the “3” point line. Another big factor in the loss was the disparity at the free throw line. Baylor made 18 more foul shots than Oklahoma on the way to advancing to Friday’s semifinals against the winner of tonight’s Texas-West Virginia game.
OU now awaits an invitation to the NCAA tournament Sunday, which is expected, with a record of 23-9.