FanPost

Sooners Improve To 6-1 In Blowout Of Mercer 96-82

Kevin Jairaj-USA TODAY Sports

Oklahoma used a 14-0 run early in the first half to grab the lead back from the Mercer Bears and never looked back. All five of the Sooners starters scored in double figures and OU then used another big run to send the Bears back home in blowout fashion. The Sooners would eventually pull away for the 96-82 victory.

The latter run referenced above reached 19-3, which was over four minutes long, and ended with the Sooners up 27-13 with 11:50 remaining in the first half.

With the win, Oklahoma moved to 6-1 on the season.

Ryan Spangler, the Sophomore transfer from Gonzaga, was phenomenal for the Sooners Monday night. He scored 20 points on 7-of-10 shooting and grabbed 13 rebounds in 29 game minutes. For Spangler, both totals were new career highs for the kid from Bridge Creek, Okla.

Many basketball experts are still bewildered as to why former Sooners coach, Jeff Capel, did note even court Spangler during the recruiting process.

After going on the run in the middle of the first half, Mercer (5-4) fought hard and came back, cutting the lead 39-30 with 3:10 remaining in the half off an Anthony White Jr. jumper.

At which point Oklahoma seemingly decided they'd had enough.

The Sooners finished the half on a mini 6-2 run, led by Spangler and Cameron Clark. And the run continued for Oklahoma into the second half. The Sooners scored the first 18 points of the second half, pushing the Sooners lead to 63-32, their largest lead with 16:21 remaining in the game.

Clark was something special once again and is certainly reaping the rewards of returning for his senior season to continue working on his game. He scored 19 points on 7-of-13 shooting Monday night. Clark came into the evening third in the Big 12 in scoring averaging 18.8 points per game.

Teaming Clark with the lights out ability of Buddy Hield, also a top scorer in the Big 12 at eighth, who added 20 points on 6-of-11 shooting and Oklahoma was well in control.

"That was as serious butt-whooping from the beginning against a really good team," said Mercer coach Bob Hoffman. "It was amazing watching them on tape."

With proficient ball movement, the Sooners were able to put up a number of three-point attempts in the game. Oklahoma finished 10-of-22 from behind the arc, 45.5 percent, well above their season average of 36.3 percent.

They also displayed a renewed defensive effort on the arc after struggling in recent games, limiting the Bears to just 28.6 percent from behind the arc and under 44 percent from the field overall. Oklahoma's defense was solid throughout the game, forcing turnovers and turning them into points. OU scored 22 points off twelve Mercer turnovers and continually found ways to force the Bears into contested mid-range jump shots.

Freshman Jordan Woodard contributed 13 points and a game-high six assists. Isaiah Cousins also chipped in with 13 points, including 2-of-3 from three-point range.

Mercer entered the evening only allowing 73.0 points per game and just 48.5 percent shooting. The sharp shooters of Oklahoma obliterated that Monday night. Sooners shot 30-of-58 (50.8 percent) and scored 96 points. It is the second time in as many games that Oklahoma has scored at least 96 points.

Now the Oklahoma Sooners will turn their attention to Texas A&M-Corpus Christi who make their way to Norman on Thursday for a 7 p.m. tip-off that can be see on SoonerSportsTV. Then Oklahoma will travel to the nation's capital to take on George Mason in Washington D.C. on Sunday, December 8.


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