Nash, Forte lead Oklahoma State over No. 10 Texas
STILLWATER, Okla. (AP) — Le’Bryan Nash and Phil Forte each scored 20 points, a big part of Oklahoma State’s win over No. 10 Texas.
Anthony Hickey, however, might have been the true star of the 69-58 upset victory.
The senior transfer student from LSU scored 10 points with nine rebounds and seven assists to lead the Cowboys.
"He played phenomenal," Forte said. "I hope he gets enough credit for tonight’s game, because he was outstanding. He affected the game in so many ways, and I think everybody else can see just what kind of point guard he is."
Nash scored eight points during a two-minute span early in the second half. Forte made back-to-back 3-pointers later during a 12-3 run for Oklahoma State (12-3, 2-1 Big 12).
"I’m proud of the effort," Oklahoma State coach Travis Ford said. "I like the fight we have and I like the edge that we play with. We’re not going to win every game, but I like how they’re playing right now."
"We were going against a team today that is a Top 10 team in America coming off of a tough loss, and we took a very good shot from them. We just hung in there and made a couple of runs," he said.
Myles Turner had 18 points, six rebounds and five blocked shots for Texas (12-4, 1-2). The Longhorns have lost two in a row and three of their last five games.
"We broke down four times in the second half that were big," said Texas coach Rick Barnes, whose team was blown out 70-49 by No. 16 Oklahoma last Monday.
"We let Forte have the 3s that he shot, that was all defensive lapse to them against the zone. … Four defensive plays that really hurt us, and when you’re struggling to shoot the ball the way we were, it’s tough," he said.
Oklahoma State, in the midst of playing four straight ranked Big 12 teams, limited Texas to just 21-of-61 shooting (34.4 percent).
"Our strength is defense," Ford said. "We’ve got to make sure our rebounding and offense helps our defense, but we have the ability to be a very good defensive team. Our press quietly helped us today. It kept them out of rhythm and it didn’t create as many steals."
Jeff Newberry’s 3-pointer from the top of the key with 7:44 remaining gave Oklahoma State a 53-46 lead.
After Texas got within four, Hickey’s second-effort putback and freshman Tavarius Shine’s 3-pointer made it 58-50 with 4:13 left.
"I saw the ball coming down and I was just able to get a hand on it," said Hickey of his putback that seemed to reverse the momentum.
"Luckily, the big guy didn’t block it, but I was just trying to make a play for my team and just step up and try to win the game," he said.
Texas led 34-30 early in the second half before Nash scored eight straight points for the Cowboys, including a pretty, left-handed layup off the glass that tied it at 36.
"That’s kind of what we expect from him, what he brings every game," Forte said. "I think he’s the best scorer in the Big 12. He’s so versatile, he does so many things for our team."
Texas: The Longhorns entered the day ranked third in the nation with 7.4 blocked shots per game, and came up with 12. Turner led the way with five, while Jonathan Holmes had four.
Oklahoma State: Has now won five of its last six over the Longhorns, although it is also 6-12 in the last 18 in the series.
Texas senior forward Jonathan Holmes entered the day averaging 12.1 points per game, but was shut out. Holmes shot 0-for-10 from the field, including 0-for-5 from 3-point range, although he did manage to record six rebounds, one assist and four blocks. . The Longhorn outrebounded the Cowboys 24-16 in the first half, including 12 offensive rebounds, but Oklahoma State rallied in that area in the second, with the final rebound tally coming in at 37 each.
In attendance was the NBA’s 2014 MVP, Kevin Durant of the Oklahoma City Thunder. The former Texas star, sitting directly behind the Longhorns’ bench, tried to remain inconspicuous, but still received a nice ovation when shown on the video board midway through the first half.
Texas: Home to face No. 14 West Virginia next Saturday.
Oklahoma State: Heads back on the road to face No. 12 Kansas on Tuesday.