October 31, 2006

Sooners show young athleticism in opener

Jeff Capel's exhibition debut was a runaway success as the Sooners defeated Oklahoma Christian 79-51 in front of a sparse crowd inside the Lloyd Noble Center.

The Sooners were led by freshman Keith Clark who poured in 18 points on 7-of-14 shooting. Keith, a highly regarded 6-foot-8, 245-pound true freshman from Oklahoma City also displayed his outside shooting by connecting on 2-of-5 three-point shots.

Clark's first effort was impressive offensively, but night was also indicative of the rest of the freshman class.

Capel recognized his scoring prowess but he also noticed his shortcomings.

"Obviously (Keith Clark) scored the basketball for us," Capel said. "He made a few posts moves, he hit a couple of threes and he has to rebound for us. He had no defensive rebounds. He has to do a better job from that aspect."

The biggest bright spot during Oklahoma's opener was their ability to value their possessions. The Sooners dished out 19 assists as a team while only turning the ball over six times. The Sooners only turned the ball over once in the second half playing several freshman throughout the half.

"We did a good job valuing the basketball and obviously made some shots early," remarked Capel. "We hit six threes in the first half and I thought some individual guys did some good things."

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