NORMAN, Okla. (AP)—Junior center Longar Longar had 20 points and a career-high 15 rebounds on Thursday night as Oklahoma’s dominant early season defensive run continued with a 69-42 win over Southern Methodist.
Oklahoma (8-3) has won four straight games and held six opponents to 48 points or less. Entering the game, the Sooners had held their opponents to an average of 54.9 points a game.
The Sooners snapped SMU’s seven-game winning streak, the Mustangs’ longest since the 1999-2000 season. SMU (9-2) failed in its first attempt to give coach Matt Doherty his 100th career win. Doherty previously coached at North Carolina and Florida Atlantic.
The already-thin Sooners might have lost forward Keith Clark, a key freshman reserve, to a first-half knee injury. Clark said tests will be performed on the knee Friday to determine the nature of the injury.
Oklahoma freshman guard Tony Crocker finished with 14 points, three rebounds and two assists. Two layups by Crocker and a dunk and free throw by Longar ended a 20-5 run by the Sooners to open the game, and SMU never caught up.
SMU guard Jon Killen kept the Mustangs close in the first half, scoring seven straight points and 10 of his team’s first 18 points. Devon Pearson’s 3-pointer pulled the Mustangs within 20-15, but they came no closer.
Clark followed Pearson’s shot with a powerful post-up move and basket halfway through the first half. A few plays later, however, he crumpled to the floor in the middle of a drive with the injury.
With the Sooners ahead by 16 points early in the second half, Longar ended any hopes the Mustangs had with an emphatic dunk off of an inbounds pass from freshman guard Bobby Maze. Oklahoma shot 53.1 percent from the field.
Pearson led SMU with 15 points, while Killen scored 11 and Donatas Rackauskas added 10 points and eight rebounds. The Mustangs shot 30 percent from the field.
Former Oklahoma forward John McCullough, the 1979 Big Eight Conference Player of the Year, was recognized at halftime in conjunction with the Sooners’ celebration of their 100th season of basketball. McCullough is now the head women’s coach for Oklahoma Baptist of the NAIA.