Shots weren’t falling for Oklahoma out near the Windy City on Friday night. The Sooners struggled to a 5-of-21 (23.8%) performance from three-point range and 32-of-75 (42.7%) overall performance from the floor.
It was a night where nothing was going to come easy in a game that was going to be a dogfight from start to finish. It was a night that would push Oklahoma’s limits all the way to overtime. It was a night where the Sooners would need Kristian Doolittle.
Oklahoma overcame a 19-8 deficit midway through the first half to draw even at the break 32-32.
The Sooners would then start off hot in the second half, hitting seven of their first eight shots to build a 48-42 lead. The Wildcats would tie it up (48-48) on a Derek Pardon layup that would spark a back-and-forth run between the two teams over the final nine and a half minutes.
With the game unsettled in regulation Oklahoma was bound for overtime for the first time this season. Riding a nine-game road losing streak against major-conference teams Doolittle became a one-man wrecking crew.
His layup at the 2:31 mark of overtime put Oklahoma up for good. He followed that with a defensive rebound on Northwestern’s next possession and then made good on a layup, fed by Aaron Calixte , to extend OU’s lead to 72-69.
Not done yet, Doolittle made a jump shot with 19 seconds left to complete a personal 6-0 run. Miles Reynolds would then provide a game-sealing layup, with three seconds left, to allow the Sooners to end the game on an 8-0 run in route to a 76-69 victory.
Doolittle led Oklahoma in scoring with 14 points and also grabbed nine rebounds, tying him with Christian James for the team lead. James fell just a rebound shy of a fifth consecutive double-double after producing 12 points.
Rashard Odomes scored 13 points off the bench and Reynolds, playing in front of hometown friends and family for the first time in his collegiate career, scored 11.
Wrapping up the non-conference portion of their schedule, the Oklahoma now stands at 11-1 on the season. They’ll face top-ranked Kansas to start conference play on January 2nd.