Gibson, Brown help Oklahoma win big
For someone who was not even named to the original Oil Bowl roster, Oklahoma’s Matt Gibson sure showed he belonged Thursday night at D.L. Ligon Coliseum.
The 6-4 forward from Putnam City, who arrived Wednesday to help an undermanned Oklahoma squad, scored 21 points as the Oklahoma All-Stars turned a close first-half contest into a 89-74 runaway.
“Coach (Gene) Davis told me before the game that Gibson was an excellent player,” Texas coach Richard Scofield said. “He was a big factor in this game, no doubt.”
But as good as Gibson was, it was his teammate, Lionel Brown of Ardmore, who stole the show. The Eastern Oklahoma College signee was everywhere on the court, slashing and shooting his way to 24 points and the game’s Most Valuable Player honor.
“I was just out there having fun,” the six-foot guard said after the game. “We came up big tonight, and it feels real good.”
Even though Texas got what it wished for in a frantic pace typical of an All-Star game, Oklahoma still prevailed.
“We’ve changed our lineup several different times,” said Oklahoma coach Gene Davis, who only suited up eight after three no-shows. “We probably had 20 different guys who said they were coming to this game. But Gibson really came in and played well.”
Oklahoma was red-hot from the 3-point line, connecting on 13-of-27 from downtown.
Brown and Gibson each hit four, and Jacob Burtschi scored nine of his 17 points from beyond the arc.
“We hit a lot of them, and we hit a high-percentage of them,” Davis said. “You’re always happy when you win any game.”
A back-and-forth first half ended with Oklahoma ahead 42-36. Oklahoma built its lead to 62-52 after three quarters and extended the margin to 20 at 82-62 in the middle of the fourth.
Gibson and Burtschi tallied 16 of Oklahoma’s 27 points in the final period and the rout was on from there. Burtschi also finished with 11 boards, leading both teams on the night.
Denton Ryan’s Brett McDade led Texas with 15 points, eight in the first quarter. Dwayne Paul of Arlington Bowie and Alexander Starr of Dallas Kimball each scored 10 in the losing effort.
Burkburnett’s Jay Whaley scored five points to go along with two assists and five rebounds on the night.
The victory evens the Texas-Oklahoma series at 1-1. The first six Oil Bowl basketball games were played under an East vs. West format.
“We always like to come across the Red River and beat Texas,” Davis said. “We did it twice (including a 66-59 win in the girls game) tonight, and we really enjoyed this game.”
Note: Texas’ Darold Crow of Wolfforth Frenship outslammed Charles Ramsdell and McDade in the finals of the dunk contest at halftime. His between-the-legs dunk wowed the audience and earned top scores.