NORMAN — Oklahoma knows all too well how tough it is to win in February. Its last 24 games in the month have resulted in just three wins. Games like Saturday’s against No. 18 Kansas State at Lloyd Noble Center exemplify why it can be so hard.
The Sooners’ 52-50 loss to the Wildcats was one of those games that it took more guts than gusto to win.
“We guarded; they guarded,” Kansas State coach Bruce Weber said. “We made enough plays when it counted.”
On the offensive end, there weren’t many of them. Both teams struggled to get any sort of offensive flow going. Every shot, pass and even cut through the lane was vigorously contested on both ends.
The Sooners, who dropped to 14-6 overall and 5-3 in the Big 12 Conference, handled it a little worse.
“We had trouble getting separation and trouble scoring,” OU coach Lon Kruger said. “Credit Kansas State; they were a better club and deserved to win.”
Getting shots wasn’t OU’s biggest problem; making them was. It went 10 minutes and 40 seconds without a point during a stretch late in the first half through the beginning of the second half. Kansas State (17-4, 6-2) only managed to go on 6-0 run during the Sooners’ offensive futility.
Still, going over a quarter of the game without scoring a single point was demoralizing.
“You realize it, but can’t dwell on it. You realize you have to get a stop and go at them again on the offensive end. We had a lot of opportunities and shots didn’t fall,” said OU forward Romero Osby, who scored a game-high 13 points.
Percentage wise, OU actually outshot the Wildcats. It was 19 for 49 from the field (38.8 percent). Kansas State shot 37.5 percent (21 for 56). Kansas State made five 3-pointers, which was two more than the Sooners. OU negated that narrow edge at the free-throw line.