OU men's basketball: Takeaways from Sooners' 75-68 win over Kansas
NORMAN — De'Vion Harmon had another big day, Austin Reaves came on strong in the second half and OU pulled off a 75-68 win over No. 9 Kansas on Saturday at Lloyd Noble Center.
The Sooners led for most of the way, with their second-half aggressiveness helping grab the lead for good in the final 10 minutes and then maintain it.
After not attempting a free throw in the first half, the Sooners were 18 of 22 from the line in the second half.
Harmon finished with 22 points, and Reaves scored all 16 of his points after the break. Reaves was 10 of 11 from the free-throw line.
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Here's three quick takeaways from the win:
Defensive intensity continues
The Sooners were strong on defense much of the game, especially in the first half.
Even when offense disappeared for stretches, OU's defense was able to keep the Sooners afloat.
Elijah Harkless was particularly effective on the defensive end, with three steals. Two of those came in the second half.
Hot and cold
OU jumped ahead for the first time with a 14-0 run over more than five minutes in the first half.
The Sooners were 7 of 13 from the floor during that stretch including 5 of 7 inside the arc while Kansas missed nine consecutive field goals. The Jayhawks went more than eight minutes of the first half without a field goal.
But then Kansas got hot and OU cooled off, making just 2 of 12 from the floor over the final 9:30 of the first half and going the final 4:14 without a field goal as the Jayhawks closed the lead to one at the break.
The win was OU's third in four games over the Jayhawks at Lloyd Noble Center.
This one was important for the Sooners, entering a stretch of four consecutive games against ranked opponents and with OU needing a signature win to bolster their NCAA Tournament resume.
On the other side, the Jayhawks have dropped three consecutive games for the first time since 2013 and just the third time in Bell Self's 18-season tenure.
The common thread with those losing streaks? Each time, the third loss in those series came at Lloyd Noble Center.