By DJ Ramirez | Sports Writer
The Baylor men’s basketball team extended its winning streak to five with a dominating 77-47 win over the Oklahoma Sooners Monday in Norman, Okla. It was a complete team victory for the Bears as every player to hit the court scored.
The Bears got to another quick start with a strong defense in the paint, turning nine turnovers into 12 points in the first half. They shot 57.1 percent from the floor and 44.4 percent from 3-point range.
Baylor ended the half with an 18-point lead over the Sooners. Baylor head coach Scott Drew said forcing turnovers was a key to the Bears’ success.
“In our offense, everybody touches the ball and handles it, passes it, so it’s really a team effort. You look at West Virginia, we had two turnovers first half, which was tremendous,” Drew said. “Last game, we had eight, and with Oklahoma, they switch a lot. They’re aggressive in the passing lanes. They try to keep the ball on the side and that contributes to you turning the ball over.”
Oklahoma attempted to rally in the second half by going on some runs to close the lead to 17. Baylor stole its momentum back to take control of the game, extending the lead to 26 with 3:37 left in the game on a dunk from junior guard Devonte Bandoo, assisted by senior guard Makai Mason, making the score 67-43 in favor of the Bears.
Junior guards Darius Allen and Obim Okeke entered the game late to seal the win with the final 10 points.
Junior forward Freddie Gillespie kept up his physical game with seven rebounds and eight points, six of which were assisted. The Bears ended the night with a total of 17 assists in the game.
Mason extended his hot streak to 12 games with points in the double digits. After being named Big 12 Newcomer of the Week, Mason continues to step up for the Bears.
The Bears will return home to face the TCU Horned Frogs at 7 p.m. Saturday. The last time the Bears played TCU, they suffered an 85-81 loss. Drew said that they will start preparing for the rematch against TCU once they return from Oklahoma.
“That’s the great thing about playing everyone twice,” Drew said. “You can take the things that worked, that were successful and hopefully have more of that, and then the things that didn’t work, you know you need to come up with a different game plan or different idea, and that’s what’s exciting as a coach.”