Jan 5, 2002

LUBBOCK, Texas (AP) - Third-ranked Oklahoma used an early knockout punch against No. 9 Texas Tech.

The Sooners jumped out to a 24-3 lead and never let up as they defeated the Lady Raiders 80-68 on Saturday.

Oklahoma guard LaNeishea Caufield had 23 points, including 14 in the opening 10 minutes of the game. The Sooners (12-1, 2-0 Big 12) scored the first eight points of the game before Natalie Ritchie got Texas Tech on the board with a 3-pointer.

Oklahoma then scored 16 straight points to build a 21-point advantage.

Rosalind Ross had 21 points and 12 rebounds for the Sooners.

"I think we came out with a lot of energy," said Oklahoma guard Stacey Dales, who finished with 15 points and five assists. "Tech always puts their game out on the floor, so we came out ready for it."

Coach Sherri Coale said her team was ready to play from the opening warmups.

"That energy infiltrated every phase of our game," Coale said

Amber Tarr, who led Texas Tech (9-3, 1-1) with 13 points, could see that.

"They made us force some things in the first few minutes," she said.

The Lady Raiders missed 17 of their first 18 shots before center Cisti Greenwalt hit a layup to make it 24-5 with 11:37 left. That ended a scoring drought of 6:23.

Oklahoma took a 44-24 halftime lead and poured it on in the early stages of the second half, The lead reached 25 points three times, the last when Ross made a foul shot with 13:19 remaining to make it a 62-37.

The Lady Raiders cut the margin to 69-55, with 18-7 run punctuated by a layup by Greenwalt with 7:14 remaining.

After its bad start, Tech went 24-for-55 for the remainder of the game. The Sooners dominated the board with a 54-41 rebounding advantage and scored 22 second-chance points.