NORMAN, Okla. (AP) — Buddy Hield scored all but two of his 17 points in the first half, and No. 18 Oklahoma shut down George Mason for a 61-43 victory Wednesday.
The Sooners (9-3) shook off early rust from a nine-day holiday layoff in the final game for both schools before conference play begins.
Oklahoma’s swarming defense held George Mason to 29.5 percent shooting from the field, including 0 for 14 on 3-pointers. The Sooners also forced 11 turnovers that led to 14 points.
Oklahoma controlled the interior, outscoring the Patriots 34-26 in the paint and outrebounding them 47-38 despite limited minutes from senior forward TaShawn Thomas, who was in foul trouble much of the day.
Freshman forward Khadeem Lattin stepped up with Thomas on the bench, grabbing nine rebounds to tie his career high.
George Mason (5-7) was led by junior center Shevon Thompson’s nine points and 11 rebounds.
George Mason was able to keep the game tight early, but watched Oklahoma’s lead balloon to 14 points at halftime thanks in part to a 14-2 run aided by four turnovers. The Sooners tightened their defense even more in the second half, holding the Patriots to 20 points.
The Sooners were not without their own offensive woes. They shot 39.3 percent for the game, including 26.1 percent in the second half. Oklahoma also committed 14 turnovers.
Thomas sat out the majority of the first half after committing his second foul 4 minutes into the game. But he was able to contribute nine points and seven rebounds in 16 minutes.
George Mason: The Patriots’ previous low was 30.9 percent shooting in their season-opening loss to Cornell.
Oklahoma: Sophomore guard Jordan Woodard had eight rebounds, eclipsing his previous career high of six.
George Mason returns home for its Atlantic 10 opener Saturday night against La Salle.
Oklahoma opens Big 12 play Saturday night at home against No. 22 Baylor.