Oklahoma St. 72, No. 13 Oklahoma 44

Thursday, February 15th 2001, 12:00 am
By: News On 6

STILLWATER, Okla. (AP) -- Oklahoma's seven-game winning streak came to an ugly, crashing halt against Oklahoma State.

The 13th-ranked Sooners shot poorly, defended poorly and didn't rebound very well, either, in a 72-44 loss Wednesday night. The point total was their lowest in three years, and they suffered their worst loss in the series since a 33-point defeat in 1964.

"Sometimes when you go on a winning streak like we've been on ... there is a tendency for kids to start reading the press clippings and start thinking they're a little bit better than they actually are," coach Kelvin Sampson said. "I thought we kind of lost our identity and our poise."

Oklahoma State ended its two-game losing streak by holding Oklahoma to 34 percent shooting, outrebounding the Sooners 32-22 and holding them to a season-low two 3-pointers.

Victor Williams scored 18 points in the first half, matching Oklahoma's team total, and finished with a career-high 26. The Cowboys shot 57 percent, the best percentage against Oklahoma this season.

"My first shot kind of felt good," said Williams, who came in averaging 11 points. "The basket just kept getting bigger and bigger for me and I just kept knocking them down."

Williams was as impressive on defense as he was on offense.

Assigned to cover J.R. Raymond, he held Raymond to seven points on 3-of-10 shooting. Raymond averaged 20 points during Oklahoma's winning streak.

"I don't think we've played any better defense in several years than we played tonight," coach Eddie Sutton said. "We played certainly the best game we've played all season. That was probably about as well as we could play."

The Sooners (19-5, 8-4 Big 12) won the previous two meetings in Stillwater and four straight road games during their winning streak, but never got untracked this time.

The Cowboys put together a 12-2 run to take a 22-9 lead.

Williams capped the spurt with his third 3-pointer.

Oklahoma went without a basket for more than five minutes later in the half, allowing the Cowboys to take their biggest first-half lead, 32-13.

The Sooners shot just 35 percent in their lowest-scoring half of the season. Their backcourt trio of Raymond, Nolan Johnson and Hollis Price managed just two points each.

The second half wasn't much better. Oklahoma cut the deficit to 16 by scoring the first basket, but Maurice Baker had nine of his points in an 11-4 run that ended any doubt about the outcome. The Cowboys led by as many as 31 at one point.

"They played like a team that desperately needed to win,"

Sampson said. "It's the best I've seen a team play against us this year."

Williams' point total eclipsed the 25 he scored as a freshman two years ago at Illinois State. He sat out last season after transferring.

Fredrik Jonzen had 15 points and Baker scored 13 for the Cowboys. Johnson was the only Sooner in double figures, with 12.

The 44 points were Oklahoma's fewest since a 53-43 loss to Nebraska in 1998.

"I thought our offense was bad and I thought their defense was great," Sampson said. "There was not one phase that Oklahoma State was not good at."

Oklahoma State improved to 9-0 at home. The Cowboys had come off an emotionally draining week -- three games in six days in their first action since a plane crashed killed two players and eight others associated with the program.