The big question surrounding the Oklahoma Sooners coming into this season was who would step up following Trae Young’s departure for the NBA. The answer, at least through the first two games, is senior Christian James. James led OU in scoring for the second straight game with 24 points. He seemingly could not miss Monday night, shooting 8-10 from the field, 3-5 from three, and 5-5 from the free throw line. This follows up a career-high 29-point performance from James in the season opener against UTRGV.
OU held UTSA scoreless for the first eight minutes of the game, but the Roadrunners eventually tied the game up before OU went on a 11-1 run to take a 10 point lead into the locker room at halftime.
The game was competitive through much of the second half. UTSA took a 52-48 lead with 14 minutes remaining. Then, the Sooners got hot. OU rattled off a 30-7 run over the next 10 minutes to put the game away. This run was thanks in large part to a hot shooting stretch from James and Aaron Calixate. Calixate, a graduate transfer from Maine, has been a steady veteran presence through the first two games. He finished the night with 18 points and 4 assists.
Sophomore Brady Manek had an off shooting night, going just 4-11 from the field and 1-5 from three, but made up for it grabbing 11 rebounds and adding a pair of blocks. Kristian Doolittle was a perfect 4-4 from the field and also posted 11 rebounds.
The Sooners have looked about as good as anyone could’ve hoped through two games, but OU gets a real test Sunday at home against Fletcher Magee and the Wofford Terriers this coming Sunday. Wofford gave North Carolina all it could handle in it’s first game, and will surely bring that upset-minded mentality into the LNC. The game will tip off at 1 pm CT.