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OU men's basketball: Sooners make third straight first-round exit in Big 12 Tournament in 72-71 loss to West Virginia

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Bieniemy & Manek

Sophomore forward Brady Manek and freshman guard Jamal Bieniemy celebrate during a game against West Virginia Mar. 2.

Oklahoma (19-13, 7-11 Big 12) let West Virginia (13-20, 4-14 Big 12) get the better of a slacking OU second half offense in a 72-71 loss, marking the Sooners' third straight Big 12 Tournament first-round exit.

Senior guard Christian James thought he made the three to send his team to overtime, but the shot was called a 2-pointer, marking the Sooners a point shy of a tie.

A 35-33 lead at the half wasn't enough for the Sooners to hang onto. Oklahoma shot just 35 percent from the field after shooting 55 percent in the first half. WVU shot 39 percent and out-rebounded the Sooners 28-18 in the second half, 46-35 on the game.

Sophomore forward Brady Manek was the biggest part of the Sooners' offense after finishing the night with 22 points on 9-16 shooting.

The Sooners now cling to a 12-1 out-of-conference record and a win over Kansas to get in the good graces of the NCAA come Selection Sunday.

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