Reynolds, Oklahoma stifle USC in 81-70 win
TULSA, Okla. (AP) — Miles Reynolds scored a season-high 20 points, Christian James added 16 and Oklahoma maintained its stifling defense in an 81-70 victory over Southern California on Saturday night.
Oklahoma (9-1) held the Trojans to 34.8 percent shooting (23 of 66) and forced 18 turnovers.
Reynolds, a graduate transfer from Pacific, has scored 14 or more in four of the last five games after not exceeding 12 in the first five.
Nick Rakocevic led the Trojans (5-5) with 17 points and 15 rebounds. USC trailed 40-28 at halftime, but closed to within 51-47 on a rebound basket by Rakocevic with 13:49 to play. The Sooners went on a 12-1 run capped by a 3-pointer by James and were never pressured again. James had 15 rebounds as OU outrebounded USC 44-39.
Brady Manek added 15 points and five rebounds for the Sooners.
Jonah Mathews had 11 points and Jordan Usher 10 for USC.
The Sooners jumped out to a 10-2 lead, fell behind 14-12, then went on an 11-0 run to take control. Reynolds made a 3-pointer, followed by a steal and layup to push the advantage to 37-22 before the Sooners settled for a 40-28 lead at the half.
USC’s Bennie Boatwright, bothered by a sore foot, made his first basket with 8:38 remaining and finished with nine points on 3-of-13 shooting, well below his 15.0 average. The Trojans played their fourth game without Kevin Porter Jr. (11.7 ppg), out with a thigh contusion.
Oklahoma has thrived on defense all year, but particularly of late, holding Wichita State to 24 percent shooting in an 80-48 victory Dec. 8. The Sooners are allowing just 36.3 percent shooting for the season, seventh best in the nation.
USC travels to Santa Clara Tuesday and plays host to Southern Utah Friday.
After playing games in Oklahoma City and Tulsa, Oklahoma returns to Norman to host Creighton Tuesday and travels to Northwestern Friday for its second Big Ten opponent, having lost to Wisconsin 78-58 on Nov. 22.