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Oklahoma State Basketball

Tech "Wrecks" a Good Start for Oklahoma State, Cowboys Fall to 0-2 in Big 12

January 9, 2024

Oklahoma State may have been late arriving to Lubbock for their first road Big 12 contest of the season, but the Pokes started fast inside the Uniter Supermarkets Arena. in the end though it was Texas Tech that made up ground in the first half, took control, and then through the hammer down in the second half to win going away 90-73. The home team shot 59 percent from the field and 54 percent from three-point range, 7-of-13. Texas Tech is now 13-2 on the season and combined with the upset win in Austin over Texas last Saturday they are 2-0 in Big 12 play. Oklahoma State drops to 8-7 on the season and 0-2 in conference play.

As for the fast start ruined, Javon Small had seven points in the first half and a jumper to open the scoring. That was followed by Bryce Thompson hitting a three-pointer and then Eric Dailey Jr. had a jumper just outside the paint for a 7-0 start. Tech got on the scoreboard, but Oklahoma State was still firing and Small’s three-pointer from the wing at the 14:46 mark saw the Cowboys up 14-5.

The Cowboys weathered a mini-run by the Red Raiders before Quion Williams steal and slam dunk on the offensive end keyed another OSU run out to a 20-11 lead. That is when the Cowboys lost control of their early domination and the shots became tough to hit. At one point Oklahoma State went on a five minute scoring drought and missed 10-of-11 shots from the field. 

Texas Tech made amends offensively as their defense began to key offense. Joe Toussaint drove inside and layed the ball in to make it 20-17. Kerwin Walton nailed a jumper and thna at the 7:42 mark afer a Dailey jumper ended the Cowboys drought momentarily to lead 22-19. Tech took the lead for the first time.

Walton’s lay up closed the gap to 22-21 and then Pop Isaacs, who is playing despite a civil suit citing a sexual assault in the Bahamas where Texas Tech played earlier this season, hit a three pointer to make it 24-22 Texas Tech and set the arena into a full celebration. 

Michael C. Johnson-USA TODAY Sports
Mike Boynton encourages his team during the Texas Tech run midway through the first half.

Tech’s lead climbed to 27-22 when Javon Small fouled Toussaint as he fired up a three-pointer from in front of the Cowboys bench. The cardinal sin of fouling a three-point shooter. The Cowboys have made that mistake a multitude of times this season and Toussaint hit all three free throws for a 30-22 Tech lead. Connor Dow came in off the bench and gave the Cowboys something to feel good about with a three from the wing and OSU was back within four points. In the final minute of the first half, Isaacs, who had 13 first half points bombed a  three and on the other end Bryce Thompson dribbled into the defense and put up a poor shot and Tech led at the half 40-31.

“They got the switch flipped and we were never able to get that back going the other way,” head coach Mike Boynton said. “That is a kid (Isaacs) that doesn’t need a lot of confidence to get going. We just never got it back going the other way.”

Tech quickly pushed their lead to double digits and as high as 21 points in the second half. The Red Raiders found a sweet spot in the offensive end opposite their bench on the wing as Isaacs hit a three-pointer down closer to the baseline, but later Walton hit one from that sweet spot to make the score 60-41 and then a couple of possessions later Chance McMillian from the same spot made it a game high 65-44 in favor of the Red Raiders. 

In the second half John-Michael Wright off the bench was a spark as he scored 14 points including a trey off a miss that was rebounded by Brandon Garrison and passed back to Wright for a made three. He was fouled and the four-point play closed it to 13 at 78-65. That margin, 13 points was as close as it would get. Bsides Wright, Thompson had 17 points and Small had 15 points.

“It was a physical game,” Boynton said. “We were wanting to play aggressive and on he road you really want to try to make it an ugly game and take the crowd out of it. They fouled us but the problem was we missed a few too many. We didn’t shoo the free throws as well (62 percent) as we had the last couple of games.”

The Red Raiders were led by Isaacs with 24 points and he was 9-of-17 shooting. Walton and Washington each had 16 points and then Toussaint had 13 points, so those four had 67 of the Raiders 90 point total. 

Texas Tech just played with the Cowboys late and that included a pair of hammer down alley-oop slam dunks to close it out. 

The Cowboys stay on the road and catch another hot team as they go to Iowa State on Saturday. Iowa State ended No. 2 Houston’s unbeaten season on Tuesday night with a 57-53 win in Ames. The Cyclones are 12-3 and 1-1 in the Big 12. The game tops off at 5 p.m. on ESPN2.

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Tech "Wrecks" a Good Start for Oklahoma State, Cowboys Fall to 0-2 in Big 12

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