Gray, Sooners roll over Texas-Pan American 94-54

Lawrence McKenzie slams two of his 18 points during OU's win over Texas-Pan American on Sunday.

In their final tune-up before Big 12 Conference play, Kelvin Sampson's Sooners hit on all cylinders in a 94-54 win over Texas-Pan American Sunday in Norman.

Oklahoma, who improved to 10-2 on the year while the Broncs fell to 7-6, were led by Taj Gray's 21-point, 12-rebound performance.

"I was pretty happy with the way we played tonight," said Gray, who recorded his fifth double-double of the season. "We played strong, we were aggressive and we had heart.

"I was getting the ball in the right places and I got open looks. My teammates deserve as much credit as me."

The Sooners opened the game on a 9-0 run and never looked back. The Broncs would cut the led to 23-18 at the 8:47 mark of the first half, but that would be as close as they would get as Oklahoma used a 25-8 run to pull away and take a 48-26 halftime lead.

The second half was more of the smae as OU opened the second half with a 13-2 run to break the game open for good.

In all, the Sooners shot 50 percent (34-68) from the field while holding the Broncs to just 36.7 percent (18-49) shooting from the field.

Joining Gray in double figures was sophomore Lawrence McKenize (18), Terrell Everett (12) and Longar Longar (11).

McKenzie was 4-for-8 from 3-point range off the bench, Everett dished out five assists and Longar added five rebounds and three blocks in 25 minutes off the bench.

Junior foward Kevin Bookout returned to the line-up after missing Thursday's game against Florida A&M and added seven points and five rebounds in 21 minutes of play.

Oklahoma outrebounded Texas-Pan American 40-33 and forced 23 turnovers. On the flip side, the Sooners turned it over only six times while dishing out 18 assists.

"It was a good way to start the new year," said Sampson on the win. "Our kids are really getting a lot better. Games like this usually come earlier in the year, but it was nice for us to play them tonight.

"Texas Pan-American is a lot better team than they showed tonight. This was their third game in five days and they have played some teams real close this year. We have a lot of respect for them."

"Last year, Kevin Bookout was injured but still playing," said Texas-Pan American head coach Robert Davenport. "From a post standpoint, they have four post players who are as good as any rotation in the country, if not better. They're just tremendous athletes. Kevin plays smart. Every time he gets the ball, he doesn't do anything stupid. And, you don't shoot 50 percent from the field and take bad shots. The guard play on this year's team is better, and defensively they're better."

The Sooners will now focus their attention to Saturday's Big 12 opener against Colorado. Sampson says his team is in a much better spot this year heading into conference play than last year.

"We have a real good idea of where our team is right now," Sampson said. "Last year at this time we were 10-0 and ranked No. 6, but didn't even get into the NCAA tournament by the end of the season. This team's going to win a lot of games this year. They feel good about themselves and they're coming together."

Tip-off for the Colorado game is set for 3 p.m. at the Lloyd Noble Center.

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