Brooks Thompson certainly enjoyed the first 10 minutes of his return to Gallagher-Iba Arena.

But the former Oklahoma State player and assistant who is now the head coach at Texas-San Antonio watched the Cowboys pull away from his Roadrunners, 84-47, in front of 11,329 fans Saturday night.

UTSA (4-9) forged a 14-all tie with 10:45 left in the first half, but from there, No. 13 OSU closed the opening frame with a 28-10 run. The Cowboys’ advantage was never cut below that 18-point cushion in the second half.

In his first season guiding OSU, Sean Sutton’s team has a 13-1 mark and has tied the 2001-02 team for the most wins before Jan. 1 in school history. That squad started 13-0 and finished 23-9 with a visit to the NCAA Tournament.

But Sutton didn’t see an NCAA Tournament team early in Saturday’s contest.

“I was pleased with how well we played the last 28 minutes,” Sutton said. “I thought the first 12 minutes we struggled with their defense. They did a good job of taking us out of some things they were trying to run. We finally settled down and started playing well and did the things we needed to to win the game.”

One thing they did was to hit 32-of-58 shots (55.2 percent), highlighted by guard JamesOn Curry’s 24 points on 8-of-15 shooting. The junior not only became the 10th-fastest player to 1,000 points in school history — he now has 1,008 in three years — but he also added five assists.

Thompson, who played in the NBA, said Curry is up there with any shooter the Cowboys have had.

“JamesOn’s a great shooter and a tremendous basketball player,” Thompson said. “He got those threes (hitting 4-of-9) on his own. We have a couple of defenders who are pretty good perimeter defenders, but JamesOn did some things that are pretty special.”

Joining Curry in the three-point barrage was center Kenny Cooper — well, the sophomore hit 1-of-2 from behind the arc for the first trey of his career. He also finished with career highs in points (15) and rebounds (eight).

“Right now he has a lot of confidence and he’s playing with a tough, physical mindset,” Sutton said. “He’s attacking the basket and doing a great job rebounding the ball. There’s no question he’s a big part of what we’re trying to get done. As he continues to improve, our team is going to get better.”

Senior forward Mario Boggan added 13 points and 11 rebounds for his third double-double of the season. Sophomore guard Terrel Harris scored 15 points.

For UTSA, guard Melvin Smith scored 16 points, while forward Keith Spencer added 10 points and 11 rebounds.



Monds admonished

Senior forward David Monds played only five minutes with three turnovers, two rebounds and a foul. The coaches sent him to the locker room, where Sutton said he still was after the game.

“We didn’t think he was ready to play,” Sutton said. “He wasn’t playing with any passion and he lacked intensity. We told him to go to the dressing room. It’s happened before in the past with various players. In my mind, it’s no different than getting kicked out of practice.”



Up next

OSU hosts Division II Southwestern Oklahoma State on Tuesday at 7 p.m. SWOSU (10-0) is coming off a 138-67 rout of Southwest Christian on Dec. 20.

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