No. 22 Stars edge No. 14 USAO 76-70
Story by Oklahoma City Sports Information
OKLAHOMA CITY - Oklahoma City University knocked off 14th-ranked USAO 76-70 Saturday at Abe Lemons Arena in a matchup of top-25 teams.
The Stars, ranked No. 22 in NAIA Division I, got double-digit points from four players and picked up the win to improve to 8-2 overall and 1-1 in Sooner Athletic Conference play.
OCU got off to a hot start from the field and ran out to a 12-2 lead. Terry Johnson and Ivan Matip led the charge with four points apiece to give OCU a 10-point advantage with 15 minutes left in the first half. USAO hit only one of its first eight shots from the field and committed three turnovers during the run.
After a 3-pointer from Shavon Scott cut the Stars' lead to six points, Matip and Shawn Grant answered with 3-point jumper of their own to help OCU stretch its lead to 24-13 with 10:26 on clock.
Grant buried clutch 3-point buckets at the 7:09 and 3:42 marks of the half to help OCU stay in front of the Drovers.
A jumper from Johnson and a transition layup from Grant bumped the Stars' lead back to double digits and gave OCU a 38-27 advantage at halftime.
The Stars shot 50 percent from the floor while holding USAO to 38 percent shooting in the first half. OCU scored 11 points off 10 turnovers and outscored USAO 20-10 in bench points.
Phillip Harris hit a 3-pointer to start the second for USAO. OCU countered with six straight points from Kaleb Smith, Elhadji Wade and Johnson to run the Stars' lead to 44-30 at the 17:44 mark.
Norris Rumph hit a 3-pointer in transition to cut into the Stars' lead, but OCU responded with a 10-5 run and ballooned its lead to 67-51 with 6:56 remaining. Johnson fueled the run with a pair of 3-point baskets.
After a 3-pointer from Dejaun Lofton cut OCU's lead to nine points, the Stars forced a turnover and Jamil Donovan found Wade for a fastbreak dunk to extend the lead to 76-65 with 1:22 left on the clock.
USAO got a 3-pointer from Lofton and a layup from Scott, but the Stars held on and picked up the 76-70 victory.
OCU shot 53 percent from the floor and 50 percent from behind the 3-point line on the game.
The Stars outscored USAO 36-26 in the paint while outrebounding the Drovers 36-29.
Johnson notched a game-high 26 points on 4-of-5 shooting from 3-point range. The junior from Chicago added seven rebounds in 38 minutes of action.
Charlton Jones flirted with a triple-double with 12 points, eight rebounds and seven assists, and Grant and Matip added 11 points apiece off the bench. Wade tallied eight points and three blocks, all in the second half, and Donovan passed out five assists with no turnovers.
The Stars will hit the road for a matchup with Lubbock Christian (Texas) at 8 p.m. Thursday at the Rip Griffin Center in Lubbock, Texas.