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Sooners fall to #9 Arkansas 88-78

The Sooners lost to the number 9 ranked team in the country by 10, in what was a very up-and-down game. The Razorbacks have an ultra-athletic team with great length; therefore, it was a bad matchup for the Sooners. In the first half, the Sooners played well, getting off to a hot start. For a good 14 minutes in the first half, the Sooners led the game. Grant Sherfield got off to a strong start but picked up his 2nd foul right before the under-4-minute timeout. After Sherfield went out of the game, Arkansas closed the half on a 12-4 run. In the second half, the Razorbacks got out to a fast start behind Ricky Council who had 26 points, and Nick Smith who had 21.

While the Razorbacks got out to a fast start in the second half, the Sooners struggled to get anything going offensively because of turnovers. Porter Moser spoke about it after the game saying, “If you look at the timeline it was their defensive pressure, turnover, basket, turnover, basket, turnover, basket, the careless one on the getting the ball in bounds but they capitalize and that’s what they do“. The Sooners simply just didn’t match up well with Arkansas at all. Arkansas scored 88 points which are the most points given up in the Porter Moser era for the Sooners. We are talking about an Arkansas team that possibly could have 4 first-round draft picks in Anthony Black, Jordan Walsh, Ricky Council, and Nick Smith Jr, who will likely be the first college player taken in the draft.

Milos Uzan was the most impressive player for the Sooners. Uzan had a career-high 15 points on the day. Uzan’s performance was encouraging as he played very aggressively and did not get sped up even against a very aggressive and fast-paced Arkansas team. Here is what Porter Moser had to say about Uzan’s performance, “How Los is playing he can really go downhill he had five assists again when you’re pressuring that much I think he can really go point A to point B… you know I think for him it’s just another ball handler with Grant and it’s another guy who can go he’s probably one of our fastest guys going downhill and he creates a but I thought he was really competing and handling that pressure“.

Sherfield led the team in scoring with 23 points on the day. Sherfield played well in the first half, but after he picked up his 2nd foul, he wasn’t really the same. Sherfiled and Uzan both showed up and played well; however, they didn’t get a ton of production from anyone else. Moser talked about the lack of production outside of Sherfield and Uzan saying, “I thought well Grant was a guy that was competing in that atmosphere I thought Los did, we got to have more guys that need to come with it

At the end of the day, it is the #9 team in the country, and it will go down as a quad 1 loss. The Sooners will play two more games before the Big 12 gauntlet begins. They will take on Central Arkansas on Saturday, December 17th. One thing to keep an eye on in that game is the production from CJ Noland and Joe Bamisile. The Sooners need both of them to find their rhythm before Big 12 play begins.

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