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January 26, 2014

Red Raiders can’t catch Sooners

LUBBOCK, Texas — You know it’s your day when the highlight play of the game was one your coach couldn’t even see. That’s the kind of afternoon it was for No. 25 Oklahoma in its 74-65 victory over Texas Tech at United Spirit Arena.

The play came with a little less than five minutes left while the Sooners were trying to hold off another Red Raider run. There were only two seconds left on the shot clock and not much time for anything but a tip.

Jordan Woodard lobbed the ball at the rim as Cameron Clark got free from his man.

“I had to dunk it,” Clark said with a huge grin spreading across his face.

The play lifted OU’s lead by back up to seven and it never dipped below six the rest of the way. The crowd at United Spirit Arena, that had been raucous when Clark’s feet left the floor, went silent.

All OU coach Lon Kruger could do was smile. He was trying to get the attention of referee Gerry Pollard to get a timeout before Woodard lobbed up the alley-oop.

“There wasn’t anything I did on that one, other than fail to get a timeout in time,” Kruger said “… I’ll catch it on tape.”

The tape will show the same as it did in person: the Sooners (16-4, 5-2 Big 12) had a remarkable ability to answer every time the Red Raiders (10-10, 2-5) seized the momentum.

Clark, who scored 17 points, had a couple of those plays. Buddy Hield, who scored a game-high 18 points, sank four 3-pointers. The last came with a little more than 6 minutes remaining. Texas Tech had just whittled OU’s lead down to four points and was in position to seriously threaten. Then Hield popped open in the corner and buried the 3-pointer.

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