Paris, Oklahoma spank North Texas in home opener

NORMAN, Okla. (AP) -- Oklahoma started its season facing a string of ranked opponents in some exotic locales. Coach Sherri Coale didn't like what she saw when she got home.

Courtney Paris got back in the double-double groove with 19 points and 22 rebounds to lead No. 9 Oklahoma to a 79-42 win against North Texas on Tuesday night in the Sooners' home opener, but Coale called it "probably the ugliest 37-point win in the history" of college basketball.

"It was pitiful," Coale said. "What were there, 50-some-odd turnovers? We had 26, they had 24. Wow! That's just ugly basketball."

The Sooners (3-2) got out to a 14-0 start but then got sloppy on offense and couldn't break the turnover habit that ended up getting them knocked out of the NCAA Tournament in the round of 16 last season.

"We wanted to score a touchdown off of one pass every time, and we didn't have to do that," Coale said. "They weren't having to defend. We weren't giving them a chance to make any mistakes. They have to recognize that, reverse the basketball, play together and create a cadence."

Paris, who had her double-double streak snapped at 64 consecutive games in Oklahoma's last outing against Mississippi State, was left dissatisfied with a performance in which she tied her career best with 10 offensive rebounds and passed the school's career blocks mark.

Her five blocks gave her 246 on her career, three more than LaNae Jones' old record.

"It was OK," Paris said. "We won, but it definitely wasn't one of our better games."

It took Paris just barely over one half of play to get to double figures in points and rebounds against the Mean Green (5-3). The reigning Associated Press player of the year had 11 rebounds in the first half and got her 11th point on a lay-up just over a minute into the second half.

Soon after, Oklahoma went on a 15-0 run that featured seven points from freshman Danielle Robinson and two 3-pointers from Jenna Plumley, with the second one stretching the Sooners' lead to 66-30.

Plumley made 5-for-9 from 3-point range and scored 15 points, Amanda Thompson added 11 points and Robinson ended up with 10 as Oklahoma snapped North Texas' five-game winning streak.

Jo Hall scored 13 and Amber Jackson added 11 to lead the Mean Green, who missed all 11 3-point attempts and shot 27 percent overall.

"We're disappointed because we think we're better than what we played, but at the same time if you can walk away feeling like you tried to play for 40 minutes and you made yourself better when you walked away, then that can help you throughout the season," North Texas coach Tina Slinker said.

The Mean Green were seeking their first six-game winning streak since the 2001-02 season, but got derailed with turnovers on their first three possessions as Oklahoma got off to a hot start. Plumley hit two 3-pointers in the Sooners' opening 14-point spurt, and North Texas never got within 10 points after that.

"I think they did a great job with our point guards keeping us out of offense just by the pressure they gave," Slinker said.

Oklahoma started the season with four straight neutral-site games, including trips to the site of the Final Four in Tampa, Fla., and a Thanksgiving tournament in Cancun, Mexico. The Sooners were blown out by Maryland in their season opener then lost by three points to top-ranked Tennessee before sweeping games against Arizona State and Mississippi State.

Coale didn't see the same passion when the Sooners finally played their home opener, their first game at the Lloyd Noble Center since an exhibition three weeks earlier.

"There are lot of reasons, but I think only people who are satisfied are going to accept those reasons," Coale said. "I think if you're truly intent upon being exceptional, being extraordinary you'll knock out those reasons. There are always reasons. It's whether or not you accept them."