Carroll paces the streaking Cowboys

Jeffrey Carroll scored 17 points and grabbed six rebounds to help Oklahoma State defeat Texas Tech 80-63 on Saturday.

“I think now we’re starting to feel that we can be great,” said Carroll. “And we’re just going to keep getting better and better.”

Phil Forte III had 15 points and five rebounds, and Jawun Evans scored all 15 of his points in the second half, along with six assists, for Oklahoma State, which has won five in a row and 10 of its last 11 games. Carroll thinks OSU is on a roll.

“It’s great,” Carroll said. “We’re blessed. Before the Tech game in Lubbock we all just kind of bought in because we knew we were down deep and we knew we had to fight back. Now we’re having fun, so we’re just trying to keep it going.”

OSU hit a school record 22 free throws in 22 attempts.

“We shoot a lot of free throws and we practice a lot,” said OSU coach Brad Underwood. “Two to three days a week we are shooting 100 free throws after practice. It’s like anything else, when you practice you get better at it.”

The win over Texas Tech secured the 35th 20-win season in OSU history, and the first since 2013-14. In the last decade, only the 2012-13 squad (March 23) would have secured their 20th win faster than this year’s team. The Cowboys won both regular season meetings with Texas Tech for the first time since 2012-13, and for the ninth time in the Big 12 era.

Forte was 5-of-7 from 3-point range in the first half. The last OSU player to make more 3-pointers in a half than Forte was Markel Brown, who made seven at Texas Tech on Feb. 13, 2013.

“They’re a well-coached team,” said Texas Tech coach Chris Beard. “Brad has done a great job. They likely have three all-conference players, and in my opinion, they’re one of the top two teams in the Big 12. They’re really well-coached, and their players are really good players, so congratulations to them.”