Oklahoma opens slate by dispatching Mount St. Mary's
Norman, OK (Sports Network) - Steven Pledger made eight of his nine shots, including a 4-for-5 effort from three-point range, en route to a game-high 21 points, as 17th-ranked Oklahoma defeated Mount St. Mary's, 95-71, in the season opener for both teams.
Tiny Gallon recorded a double-double with 18 points and 15 rebounds for the Sooners (1-0), who went 30-6 last season and advanced to the Elite Eight before losing to eventual national champion North Carolina.
"We have a lot of work to do. I wasn't pleased with transition defense and some things defensively," said Oklahoma head coach Jeff Capel. "Mainly, a lot of it was transition. We have to do a better job of really understanding and listening to a scouting report and carrying that over to a game."
Willie Warren totaled 15 points and 11 assists for Oklahoma.
Jeremy Goode poured in 18 points to pace the Mountaineers (0-1), who finished 19-14 last season. Jean Cajou scored 13 points, while Shawn Atupem and Kelly Beidler each donated 10 points in the loss.
"I was proud of the way my guys fought," said Mount St. Mary's head coach Milan Brown. "We knew we were playing against a very good team today. They showed it in stretches of the game. Some parts of the game we felt we did a good job. We just couldn't sustain it for long periods of time."
Oklahoma built a 23-16 lead on a Warren layup midway through the first half. Tayvon Jackson sank two free throws to pull the Mountaineers to within two at 31-29, but the Sooners finished the period strong and led 49-36 at the break.
Mount St. Mary's continued to hang around early in the second half, cutting its deficit to 55-50 after Goode drained a pair at the foul line. Oklahoma, though, went on a 15-2 run to go up 70-52 with about 9 1/2 minutes remaining. The Sooners led comfortably the rest of the way.
Oklahoma has won all four meetings with the Mountaineers...Andrew Fitzgerald finished with 14 points and five rebounds for the Sooners...Oklahoma held a 51-30 edge on the boards and shot 45.1 percent from the floor.
11/14 20:17:34 ET