USA TODAY Sports
The Oklahoma Sooners downed the Iowa St. Cyclones to break the tie for fourth place in the conference. While the projection is that these two will meet in the Big 12 Tournament first round, there is much to be said for accomplishing this once believed to be impossible task.
On Senior Day in Norman, Oklahoma, a more suitable player to take player of the game honors could not be found outside of Senior Sam Grooms. Over the final stretch of the season, Grooms has played a major role in the success story of this team and continued to do so this afternoon. He would finish the game with 19 points and 6 assists while running the game without a single turnover.
Outside of Grooms, Romero Osby was up to his usual antics with 22 points as the seniors who played all scored in double-digits. Andrew Fitzgerald came off the bench to add 10 points of his own as Steven Pledger poured in another 14. The appreciation for what each of these players has done for this team was dually noted as fans rose to their feet with each final substitution.
What a turn around for this Oklahoma Sooners team from the charity stripe. For the past several seasons, many dreaded watching OU take an attempt from the free throw line. This season, they have connected at a decent rate. However, it all culminated this afternoon as Oklahoma hit a school record 34 consecutive attempts. This mark also put the Sooners at a 100% conversion rate and would be the second time this season the Sooners completed this feat.
For the Iowa St. Cyclones, Tyrus McGee continued his barrage from beyond the arc. Shooting 6-for-9 from range, McGee finished the game with 22 points and extended his streak of 50% or better to 6-of-last-7 games. ISU's leading scorer, Will Clyburn was all but shut down as he added only 6 points on 1-of-5 shooting.
The biggest difference was that Oklahoma committed only five turnovers in 40 minutes of play. While the game set up much like the Texas Longhorns did, turnovers were not an issue today. It was still apparent at times that OU struggles with back court pressure but no one should complain with the outcome this time around.
The Sooners will be back on the hardwood in front of the home crowd for the final time as they take on the West Virginia Mountaineers on Wednesday!