Oral Roberts led by as many as 32 points and cruised to a 20-point victory on the road at Missouri State, downing the Bears 72-52 at JQH Arena Saturday afternoon. The Golden Eagles (4-4) made sure the game was never in doubt, scoring 19 of the game's first 21 points to lead 19-2 11 minutes into the first half.
Warren Niles was the leading scorer with 21 points and for the first time since Dec. 30, 2011, led the team in rebounding with a career-high nine boards. Niles filled up the stat sheet with an 8-of-10 performance from the field, including a perfect 3-of-3 mark from 3-point range in addition to his nine rebounds, two assists and a steal.
Shawn Glover added 14 points, while Damen Bell-Holter added 12 points and Steven Roundtree scored nine.
ORU shot 51 percent for the game (30-58), holding MSU to a 30.3 percent clip (20-66) and dominated the paint with a 44-34 advantage on the glass and a 36-28 advantage in the paint. ORU also had a season-low 12 turnovers in the victory.
"I'm pleased, obviously, with how we played," said Sutton. "It was very unexpected. I have a lot of respect for Coach (Paul) Lusk. I thought our guys did a great job of coming out with a lot of energy. Warren Niles continues to shoot the ball at a rate that very guys across America are able to and he got us going early. Our defense was good early and we probably got fortunate where they missed some shots. We did a great job on the glass. We really challenged our guys the last couple of days in practice and I thought they did a fantastic job of getting defensive rebounds, getting out and pushing the ball and getting some opportunities."
ORU will travel to Texas State on Wednesday, December 5 in the Golden Eagles' final contest before taking a break for final exams.