The Oklahoma Sooners won their second straight neutral-site game, topping the Oregon State Beavers 77-69.
Oklahoma broke the game open early in the second half, but the Sooners had to fend off a late comeback form the Beavers.
Despite leading by 20 points at one point in the second half, Oklahoma had to show some maturity in the final minute. Oregon State forced two quick turnovers, and the Sooners found themselves only ahead by six points with 35 seconds left in the contest.
After absorbing Oregon State’s late push, Oklahoma was able to see off the game and remain unbeaten to start the season.
Here are three takeaways from the game:
Second Half Surges Continue
Oklahoma has dominated in the second halves of games this season. The Sooners are outscoring their opponents 138-98 out of the break in their first three games.
A large part of the second half dominance has started with an emphasis on rebounding.
The Sooners went into the half against Oregon State with a one point lead even though the Beavers held a 23-17 rebounding edge.
Out of the break, the Sooners cleaned up on the glass, leading to better looks on the offensive end in transition.
With every player but De’Vion Harmon measuring at 6’5” or taller, Oklahoma should have the length and athleticism to win the rebounding battle every game.
The Sooners finished the game with a positive rebounding margin, winning the battle on the glass 42-37.
Doolittle Looking Confident
Kristian Doolittle grew into the game, finishing with a monster double-double of 19 points and 16 rebounds for the Sooners.
Doolittle missed the season opener for the Sooners, having to serve a one game suspension by the NCAA for playing in an unsanctioned summer league game. In his second game of the season, Doolittle appears to be settling back in.
Not only did Doolittle lead the team in scoring, but he did so by pouring in shots from all over the floor.
Doolittle had no trouble forcing the issue and finishing inside, drawing contact and getting to the free throw line and converting all five of his free throws. He also shot a perfect 2-of-2 from deep.
Reaves Finding His Stride
After a rocky first two games from behind the arc, Austin Reaves is starting to dial in his three point jumper.
Reaves shot just 2-of-12 from deep in his first two games, a far cry from his 45 percent career average at Wichita State.
In the second half, Reaves came alive, scoring 14 of his 17 points for the night. Most importantly, Reaves shot 55 percent from three.
If Reaves can build on his shooting performance against Oregon State, the Sooners will be difficult to guard. With their combination of length across every positon, and the blend of Doolittle’s inside game and Reaves’ sharpshooting, the Sooners will be a dynamic offense.
The Sooners will return to the Lloyd Noble Center on Nov. 18 to face William and Mary.
Tip-off is scheduled for 6 p.m. and the game will be broadcast on Fox Sports Oklahoma.