Stanford started the season an impressive 6-0, but it was easy to have reservations. All 6 contests had been in Maples Pavilion, and each opponent was from a mid or low major conference. After this dominating win over Oklahoma, it’s time to start taking notice.
The Cardinal flew out to a 17-0 lead, stunning the 27th ranked Sooners and the nation at large. Jerod Haase’s defense flummoxed the Big 12 squad, forcing a series of turnovers and surrendering only contested jump shots. OU didn’t get their first points until the game was 6 minutes gone.
The Sooners managed a quick 10-0 run to cut the lead to 17-10 thanks to tough perimeter shots from Austin Reaves. But that was the last time the lead would be single digits, as the Cardinal responded with an immediate 7-0 run of their own.
They battled their way to a 37-24 advantage at the break. It was the fifth time in seven games that the Cardinal have conceded 25 or fewer in the first half. Oklahoma shot just 29% from the field in the frame and committed 8 turnovers.
It would’ve been easy to rest on the lead, but Stanford had other things in mind. They scored 4 quick points out of the locker room thanks to a block by Spencer Jones and a steal and slam from Oscar da Silva. The defensive effort didn’t seem to dip a bit, and Lon Kruger’s squad was visibly exasperated. Reaves was able to work his way for some tough buckets, but that was about it for the crimson and cream. It was deep into the second frame before they recorded their 4th assist, a true testament to a stifling defense.
Stanford led by as many 24 on their way to the 19 point win. It was the 7th double figure win in 7 games, and the walk-ons once again got game action. It was the first appearance for former manager Dan Begovich.
Tyrell Terry continues to exceed even the loftiest of expectations people had for him. He turned in his second consecutive 20-10 game, reaching those plateaus just seconds into the second half. He’s had 10+ points, 2+ assists, and 2+ steals in each game this season, becoming only the second player in the last 20 seasons to start their career with 7 such performances (Trae Young being the other). It’s uncanny how slow the game looks to him already.
Fellow freshman Spencer Jones had another standout performance, as well. The rangy wing is the prototypical 3-and-D archetype that every team wants these days. He scored 13 points on 4-8 from deep, grabbed 6 rebounds, and notched 3 blocks and 2 steals. A big part of this early season success is thanks to Jones’ shooting and grit, and he no doubt relished the opportunity to play in his backyard.
Bryce Wills was in double figures for the second time this season with 10. Oscar da Silva wasn’t his sharpest, but still put up 9 and 11. Daejon Davis scored 8 second half points and dished out 4 assists. The Cardinal held a 51-32 rebounding advantage, and shot 10-25 from distance. Four different players recorded two steals.
Oklahoma dropped their first game of the season after entering as 5 point favorites. Austin Reaves led the way with 17, while Alondes William and Brady Manek scored 12 and 10, respectively. Their star Kristian Doolittle managed just 4 points on 2-8 shooting while turning it over 4 times.
Stanford looks to win the tournament tomorrow when they face off against an undefeated Butler squad. The Bulldogs knocked off a Cuonzo Martin led Missouri earlier today, and looked very good in doing so. Like Oklahoma, they were the recipient of a handful of votes in the AP poll.