After completely dominating the 2013 Cowboys, 2005's version felt good about their chances against arguably one of the best teams ever to put on an OSU uniform.
Oh what a difference an opponent makes.
Catch All The Tournament Action
Catch All The Tournament Action
1995 Oklahoma State showed no visible signs of rust, and demonstrably put this game on ice before folks got warm in their seats, coasting to an easy win and advancing to the tournament's Final Four. They'll await the winner of '46 vs '49, but all will be anxiously awaiting the possible match up between Big Country and Bob Kurland.
This tournament has seen its share of first half surges out of early timeouts, and this game was no different.
After allowing a put-back slam off of an offensive board by Joey Graham, and subsequently turning it over on their next possession, Eddie Sutton called an early timeout with the score 4-0 in favor of 2005. The '95 Cowboys missed their next shot, but Reeves first of 7 blocks led to a transition 3 by Randy Rutherford, and it was off to the races.
At the first media timeout, it was 12-4 in favor of '95, and by the 2nd media timeout the scoreboard read 22-8.
And it was all driven by Reeves.
Sutton's 2005 bunch had no answer for the big man, as he continuously posted up on the block offensively and harassed any invasion into the paint on defense. At one point Reeves had recorded 10 consecutive points for 1995 OSU. If 2005 ever attempted to help, the defensive rotation would eventually leave Rutherford open just enough to fire, and it was usually on target. In fact, Rutherford was a perfect 5-5 for the game from behind the arc in transition, and he was 4-6 from 3 in the first half. When halftime mercifully arrived, the '05 Cowboys trailed 45-22, with both Graham's and Ivan McFarlin carrying 3 fouls. Reeves and Rutherford accounted for 34 of 1995's 45 points, with Big Country registering 19 of those points on 6-7 from the floor and 7-10 from the line along with 5 blocks. Rutherford would end the half 5-8 from the floor and 1-1 from the line.
2005 would make a brief run to start the 2nd half, cutting the lead to 16 by the first media timeout, but Rutherford would hit two consecutive from deep to stretch the lead back to 22, ending all hope. When Reeves and Rutherford checked out with just over 3 minutes remaining, they had posted an astonishing 65 of the '95 Cowboys 78 points. Reeves would finish with 35 points (11-14 FG, 13-17 FT), 17 rebounds (7 off), 3 assists, and 7 blocks. Rutherford posted 30 points (10-17 FG...7-13 from 3...3-3 FT), 5 rebounds, 4 assists, and 4 steals. Only 3 other players would score points, led by Jason Skaer with 7, Andre Owens with 6, and Chianti Roberts with 4. Roberts would also pull down 10 boards and recorded 3 blocks.
Sutton's 2005 squad was lead by John Lucas III with another solid stat line of 14-5-7-0-4, but that was the lone positive. Stevie Graham and McFarlin would foul out with over 5 minutes remaining, and neither player managed double figures. Joey Graham would manage 12 points and 10 boards, but no other player registered more than 5 rebounds. Jameson Curry, for the 2nd consecutive game, put up a very quiet 10 points and never really impacted the game offensively. After totally dominating the glass in the opening round, 2005 was smothered, losing the battle 38-24.
Amazingly enough, 2005 took good care of the ball (only 8 turnovers), but were held to 32% shooting from the floor.
For 1995 Oklahoma State, it's on to familiar territory and a potential match up featuring the two best big men to ever play for the Cowboys. Before that can happen, though, Kurland and Company must deal with '49 A&M, led by Bob Harris and Joe Bradley.
Reeves had this to say after the big win:
If we thought we were fired up to start the game, well, that was nothin' compared to how we came outa that first time out. Coach "reminded" us of a couple things, and we took care of business. When Randy is shooting like that, it makes so many things easier. 2005 was a good team, they just caught us on a hot day. Hopefully this time we'll take advantage of the opportunity.