No. 25 Oklahoma 60, Texas Tech 48

Friday, January 20th 2006, 11:38 am
By: News On 6

NORMAN, Okla. (AP) _ Michael Neal scored 15 points and hit four 3-pointers in the final 4 minutes to help No. 25 Oklahoma fend off Texas Tech's second-half rally for a 60-48 win over the Red Raiders on Saturday.

The Red Raiders (10-9, 2-3 Big 12), who trailed by as many as 22 points in the first half, pulled to 40-38 when Jon Plefka hit a jumper from just inside the 3-point line to cap a 17-1 run.

Austin Johnson made a pair of free throws to get Oklahoma's offense going and Taylor Griffin's two-handed dunk ended an 8-minute field goal drought and moved the Sooners' lead to 45-38.

Terrell Everett added a free throw, then set up Kevin Bookout for a layup before Neal's first 3-pointer extended the lead to 51-40. Neal, Oklahoma's top 3-point shooter, also hit 3s on the next three possessions, with the last putting the Sooners up 60-44.

Neal missed Oklahoma's first two conference games with a groin injury, and the Sooners (11-4, 2-2 Big 12) lost by one point to Nebraska and two points to Missouri. Without him, the Sooners were 8-for-35 from 3-point range in the two losses.

He returned in time for Oklahoma's 45-44 win over Texas A&M last Saturday. The Sooners had never before played four straight games decided by two points or less, and Neal ensured it wouldn't happen against Tech.

He was 4-for-7 from 3-point range and finished one point shy of matching his career high. Everett scored 11 and Johnson had 10 while Taj Gray had 11 rebounds and Bookout pulled down 10 boards.

Oklahoma outrebounded Tech 38-23.

Jarrius Jackson, the Big 12's second-leading scorer at 19.3 points per game, scored all 15 of his points in the second half and Martin Zeno added 13.

Early on, the Sooners were poised to run away with the game.

Everett scored eight points and Johnson hit two 3-pointers as Oklahoma capitalized on Tech turnovers on four straight possessions for a 16-2 lead.

Griffin added back-to-back baskets to start another Oklahoma run, and Longar Longar banked in a hook shot from the right block to give the Sooners a 27-5 advantage.

The Red Raiders trailed 32-12 after shooting 5-for-21 (24 percent) in the first half, but were able to close in as the Sooners went on a scoring shortage of their own.

Jackson hit a 3-pointer to start Tech's comeback and he and Zeno had five points apiece as the Raiders closed to within two.

Tech was 11-for-20 (55 percent) in the second half.
Tip-off is at noon at the Lloyd Noble Center .