NORMAN, Okla. -- Oklahoma had to play its final tune-up without its top player and received contributions across the board Sunday afternoon at the Lloyd Noble Center.
Morgan Hook and Derica Wyatt combined for 23 points and five 3-pointers as the Sooners defeated Samford 66-35 in the first meeting between the two teams.
Wyatt made her first career start in place of OU's leading scorer Aaryn Ellenberg, who sustained a concussion in practice Friday and did not dress for the game.
“Going in there I just had to keep the mindset of not having a drop-off between me and Aaryn," Wyatt said, "so I just had to play hard and do my part on the floor with making good passes. Don’t turn it over. Just to not let there be a drop-off with Aaryn on the bench.”
Wyatt was 3-for-3 on 3-pointers and led Oklahoma with 9 points in the first half.
"We moved toward the things that we had focused on over the break," OU head coach Sherri Coale said. "We did a really nice job of reversing the basketball and sharing it. I think that’s reflected in our shooting percentage."
Samford (3-9) took an 8-4 lead but Oklahoma then rattled off 25 of the next 30 points, including eight by Hook, who capped the run with her second 3-pointer of the game. The Bulldogs, who made just 12 of 48 (25 percent) field goals and 6 of 33 (18.2 percent) 3-pointers, would never again get closer than 14.
Oklahoma (9-4), which took a 36-20 advantage into the break, out-rebounded Samford 46-21 and shot 50 percent from the field and 47.6 percent from long range. The Sooners recorded 16 assists on 23 field goals.
"We did a good job of forcing them to shoot 3's," Coale said. "We got them deep in the shot clock several times. It wasn’t that they were settling for 3's. We took things away as they tried hard to get into the paint."
Oklahoma led 36-20 at halftime.
Samford's Shelby Campbell totaled 12 points and six rebounds.
“I think we still have a lot of work to do and right now we are just going over hills and hills and we are just trying to get up that mountain," OU senior Morgan Hook said. "I think we have made steps in the right direction as of the past couple of days and we just have to keep growing. I believe that we still have a shot in the race.”
Oklahoma, the preseason pick to win the Big 12, begins conference play Thursday, Jan. 2, at Texas Tech.