Stoddart, Putnam fuel Oklahoma Baptist men
ARKADELPHIA, Ark. – Behind tremendous performances from seniors Harrison Stoddart and Burke Putnam, Oklahoma Baptist earned a 77-71 win over Ouachita Baptist on Tuesday night.
Stoddart returned to his old ways in his second game back, torching the Tigers' defense for 20 points. The forward shot 7-of-13 (53.8%) from the floor, including six 3-pointers, and added a couple of blocks in 26 minutes of action. Putnam was nearly perfect as he only missed two shots (9-of-11) on his way to 19 points. He added four assists, two steals, and one block to his stat sheet.
Brantly Thompson and Nigel Wilcox rounded out the Bison's double-digit scorers, collecting 12 and 10 points. Thompson shot 50% from the floor while Wilcox went 6-for-6 from the charity stripe and notched eight boards.
Though low in scoring, young guns D.J. Freeman and Jordan Thompson were valuable contributors in the victory. Thompson dished out four assists, while Freeman got the OBU bench on their feet with a couple of electrifying dunks.
The Bison (9-4 overall, 6-1 in the GAC) held Ouachita to a 45% shooting clip, including a 7-of-22 tally from 3-point range, and forced 12 turnovers. OBU knocked down 10 triples, one less than their season high, to remain undefeated on the road in conference play.
Both squads shot efficiently in the first half, with Ouachita holding the slight advantage at 46.4%. Still, the Bison managed to collect 50% of their 3-pointers in the inaugural half, sparked by a couple from Stoddart and Thompson early on.
Putnam hit a turnaround jumper to give Oklahoma Baptist a 15-11 lead at the 14:55 mark. Then OBU reached a five-point lead, courtesy of another Stoddart triple to go up 22-17. The Tigers clawed their way back into the contest, refusing to go away until the Bison reached their largest lead of the half, sending the two into the intermission, 37-31.
Ouachita Baptist matched every OBU basket after the break, staying within reach until the Bison gradually widened the gap late to stall a greedy Tiger squad inside the Vining Arena.
Oklahoma Baptist will complete its short road tour on Thursday, as the Bison make the short trip over to Bethany for a 7:30 p.m. matchup with Southern Nazarene (5-5, 0-4 GAC).