Sooners roll to big Bedlam win

By Kyle Phillips/The Norman TranscriptOklahoma’s Trae Young drives down the court during a Big 12 matchup with rival Oklahoma State Wednesday night inside the Lloyd Noble Center. Young just missed out on a triple-double, finishing with 27 points, 10 assists and nine rebounds in OU’s 109-89 rout.

NORMAN — Oklahoma State did its best to stop the Trae Young show. In the end, it could only slow the curtain.

As Young nearly registered a triple-double with 27 points, 10 assists and nine rebounds, the No. 7 Oklahoma men (12-1, 2-0 Big 12) won their 10th straight, 109-89 over Oklahoma State, Wednesday at Lloyd Noble Center. While he got off to a slow start, finishing the first half with just 2 for 8 shooting for 10 points, the rest of the Sooners shot 70 percent from the field, 14 for 20. Once Young started scoring too, the Cowboys (10-4, 0-2 Big 12) couldn’t keep up.

His 8-point start to the second half sparked a 15-2 run that secured OU’s first Bedlam win since the 2015-16 season. Last year was OSU’s first sweep in the series since 2004.

“The [student section waving brooms last year] motivated us,” guard Christian James said. “We wanted to come out stronger and sweep them.”

Young needed just a little more than 20 minutes of game time to reach the 20-point plateau, becoming the first Sooner to do that in 12 straight games. However, the long arms of OSU guards Tavarius Shine and Kendall Smith, slowed that down for a while.

Forcing the ball out of Young’s hands didn’t stymie the Sooners, though. While the nation’s leading scorer was held in check, OU slammed home six dunks. With 15 minutes left, it had surpassed OSU’s defensive average coming in, 67.2, and with 3:27 left, it reached 100 points for the first time in Bedlam since 1990.

“We have other guys that can play on this team too,” James said. “If you just try to take that as your gameplan, I feel like other guys will step up and make plays. It’s pick your poison.”

OU did it all with a sunny disposition.

Young forced a double-technical foul from Shine after drilling a deep 3-pointer with 16:57 left. His coach, Lon Kruger, wasn’t happy, but the whistle served as a catalyst for the Sooners. OU took its first 20-point lead on a dunk by guard Rashard Odomes less than two minutes later, just one of many examples where the upset-minded Cowboys failed to get under the Sooners’ skin.

After leading OSU with 14 points at halftime, Shine recorded just two more before fouling out with 13:29 left and the Sooners up 71-51.

“That tech gave him one,” Young said. “I’ve seen it all out there in my high school days. This is the game of basketball. A lot of people are going to try to get in my head, try to force me to do things I’m not comfortable doing. But I’ve got great teammates around me. I trust them with the ball in their hands as much as me.”

The other Sooner freshman didn’t lose his cool either. Unfazed by the sellout crowd, forward Brady Manek showed off his touch from deep, finishing with a team-high 28 points on 9 for 11 shooting, 6 for 8 from behind the 3-point arc. It was the first time anyone other then Young had led OU in points in a game this season. Guard Kameron McGusty scored in double figures for the fifth straight game, notching 15 points, and James added 12.

Khadeem Lattin, Jamuni McNeace, Matt Freeman and Odomes also got on the scoresheet, showcasing the team’s depth when the Sooners needed it most. For when the Cowboys slowed down college basketball’s biggest star, it became impossible to stop everyone else.

“It was surprising, because we figured if we got it out of his hands, we kind of would break apart,” OSU guard Brandon Averette said. “But everybody was hitting shots tonight.”

Jeff Cali has been covering sports in the Ada area since the mid-90s. He graduated from Byng High School and earned a bachelor’s degree from East Central University.