Sophomore De'Angelo Alexander came off the bench to score 17 points and freshman guard Lawrence McKenzie scored 16 as No. 22 Oklahoma (14-4, 4-3) won their fourth straight with a 75-48 rout of Iowa State (13-5, 4-3) Wednesday night in Norman.
"We were due for this," said Oklahoma Head Coach Kelvin Sampson, whose Sooners hit 12 of their 25 three-point attempts.
"Basketball is like any other team sport. You have to have chemistry. We're learning how to get better."
"Not very many teams can lose four games and turn around and win four games in a row. That's what makes me so proud of our team — our toughness."
Oklahoma hit five of their 12 three's in the first half as they jumped out to a 31-17 lead and never looked back.
McKenzie hit the first three of the game and then his back-to-back triples just over six minutes into the second half pushed the Sooners' lead to 47-30 and the rout was on.
But is was Alexander who stole the show with his long range bombs on this night. In all, the sophomore from Midwest City hit five of his seven attempts behind the arc.
"I have been working hard in practice and my confidence has been up," said Alexander. "The repetition in practice has been a big part of it and I feel that every time I go out I have the confidence to knock down all my shots."
Now, back to McKenzie. The true freshman from Minneapolis has been on fire lately, and his 16 point effort tonight was his third straight double-digit performance.
"Lawrence McKenzie played great tonight," said Sampson. "The best part is that he hasn't hit his best yet, and I know he's going to get better."
"Confidence has been the main key," said McKenzie, who is averaging 15 points over the last three games. "I've had a lot more confidence in every aspect of the game. Coach has had a lot more confidence in me when I step on the floor every night. I have confidence in my shooting. I take the same shots in games that I do in practice and it's all about repetition and confidence."
Another aspect of OU's four-game winning streak has been the implementation of the 2-3 zone. The Sooners' zone has been giving opponents fits over the last three games, and tonight was no different. Oklahoma's defense forced 19 turnovers and held the Cyclones to 30 percent (17-50) from the field.
"I thought Oklahoma played well and outplayed us in every facet of the game," said Iowa State coach Wayne Morgan on OU's defense.They played very well defensively and I thought their guards were quick. We have played a lot of games and did not have that many turnovers."
Up next for the Sooners is the first installment of the Red River Shootout this year against Texas in Austin on Sunday. The 'Horns (15-3, 6-1) will enter Saturday's showdown in a three-way tie for first place with Kansas and Oklahoma State.
Tip-off is set for 12 p.m. OU-Iowa State Box Score