OU basketball notebook: Wild game for Grooms
BY GUERIN EMIG World Sports Writer
Sunday, February 17, 2013
2/17/13 at 6:38 AM
John Klein: Intense Bedlam battle is reminder of what rivalry used to be like
OSU basketball notebook: Then vs. now
OSU outlasts OU for wild win in OT
Little things end up hurting OU in Bedlam loss
Sam Grooms' season high coming into Bedlam was seven points. The Oklahoma point guard came in shooting 42 percent, with one 3-pointer on the season.
Grooms didn't hit any 3s Saturday, but he knocked in three 18-footers in the first half, forcing Oklahoma State defenders to come out and play him. That opened driving lanes, and when the game was over Grooms had a career-high 18 points on 9-of-11 shooting.
He also had the game's costliest turnover in the final minute of overtime, when Markel Brown stole the ball from him and the Cowboys converted a layup to lead 82-79.
OU coach Lon Kruger pointed out that mistake in postgame. He also said: "He was terrific. We wouldn't have been in that position (a one-point game in overtime) had he not played as well as he did."
Streaky day for Pledger: OU guard Steven Pledger began the game 1-for-6, one of the primary reasons for the Sooners' 5-for-22 start as a team, and their 19-8 deficit after eight-plus minutes.
Then Pledger got hot. He scored seven points in the final eight minutes of the first half, propelling a 23-6 run that gave OU a 35-27 halftime lead.
Pledger hit a pair of 3s within 39 seconds of each other midway through the second half. That gave him 18 points on the day, and provided the Sooners a 54-48 advantage.
From there until the end of overtime, however, Pledger didn't score. He missed both of his shots over the final 11:43 of regulation, and then turned the ball over twice without shooting in OT.
Buddy system: With starting guard Buddy Hield sidelined by a broken foot, Kruger turned to Je'lon Hornbeak to reenter the lineup. Hornbeak scored 10 points behind a trio of 3-pointers. He didn't commit a turnover in 31 minutes.
He also had to guard Marcus Smart more than anyone else, making the day even longer.
Isaiah Cousins, OU's second starting freshman guard, picked up two early fouls. That, plus Grooms' offensive emergence, kept him on the bench for all but 10 minutes.
Ready to dance?: Kruger was asked about the Sooners' NCAA Tournament hopes after Saturday's defeat.
"We're not at all concerned about it," he answered. "If the selection was today, we might have some feelings about that, and feel pretty good about it. But we've got a lot of games left and a lot of work to do. We'll approach it like we always need one more (win)."
Oklahoma senior guard Sam Grooms drives the lane in Oklahoma State's 84-79 overtime win over Oklahoma in the Bedlam Series at Gallagher Iba Arena in Stillwater. KT KING / For the Tulsa World