OSU pummels Tech in 34-point win
BY KELLY HINES World Sports Writer
Sunday, January 20, 2013
1/20/13 at 6:17 AM
STILLWATER - Oklahoma State got some of its swagger back Saturday.
While demolishing Texas Tech 79-45 at Gallagher-Iba Arena, the Cowboys appeared back to their early-season form after struggling of late.
"This is definitely a game we needed," guard Markel Brown said. "Coming off three losses out of four games, we needed this game to get back in our rhythm, to get back playing the way we played at the beginning of the season."
The emphatic 34-point win, the largest margin of victory over a Big 12 opponent in 13 years, followed a tough week of practice that included several days starting at 6 a.m.
"I'm very happy with the way they responded from this week, because I wasn't sure how much we would have left for this game," coach Travis Ford said. "I thought we got better this week.
"I don't know if I've ever gone as hard as we did this week during this time of year. But I knew it was going to make us a better basketball team eventually. I didn't know (it would) today."
With a disappointing Bedlam loss from a week ago put in the past, OSU (12-4, 2-2 Big 12) jumped out to a 21-8 advantage on a three-point play from Brown.
Star freshman point guard Marcus Smart picked up his second foul eight minutes into the game and sat for the rest of the half. With Smart out, Phil Forte nailed his first three 3-pointers to provide some scoring relief. He finished with 19 points.
"It was huge," Brown said of Forte's contributions. "They got the team sparked up. They gave us a little lead for us to work on and they led us down the way."
The Red Raiders, who haven't won in Stillwater since 2003, got back in the game with an 8-1 run, but key plays from OSU center Philip Jurick helped push the lead back to double digits late in the first half.
After halftime, the pesky defense that carried the Cowboys early in the year was back in full force, prompting Texas Tech to take bad shots that resulted in only four field goals in the second half.
"We got to the basics of what we did that made us successful in the beginning of the season," Brown said. "One of those things was putting pressure on the ball and not letting them get easy looks.
"Going back to that, we just tried to not give them open shots, not letting them feed the post so easily, just man up and rebound."
Brown, who led OSU with 21 points and a season-high six assists, delivered the play of the game when he drove from the left wing for an easy one-handed dunk. The ensuing free throw made the score 43-26.
"It felt great," Brown said. "It's been a minute since I got one of those, and it was kind of good to spark the team and get the team going."
Texas Tech (8-8, 1-4) didn't get any closer the rest of the way, even with the Cowboys' starters on the bench during the final minutes.
"You can only stop those guys so many times," interim coach Chris Walker said. "We needed to have some offensive firepower on our side to try and neutralize some of their runs, but it's just hard to do that.
"... They have three or four guys I believe that will be playing in the NBA one day. That's very important at this level, to have those players if you want to be successful. But what it comes down to is Oklahoma State plays hard and they play a certain type of style and they have shot-makers and guys that are playmakers."
Kelly Hines 918-581-8452
Oklahoma State's Le'Bryan Nash is fouled by Texas Tech's Ty Nurse on Saturday in Stillwater. Oklahoma State won 79-45. NATE BILLINGS/The Oklahoman