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Durant scores 32 as Texas wins fifth straight

Feb 25, 2007 - 1:06 AM NORMAN, Oklahoma (Ticker) -- Freshman sensation Kevin Durant continued to be a one-man wrecking crew for Texas.

Durant scored 32 points and D.J. Augustin added 18 as No. 20 Texas tied a season high with its fifth consecutive victory, a 68-58 triumph over Oklahoma in a Big 12 Conference game.

The Longhorns (21-7, 11-3 Big 12) never trailed and remained in third place in the conference standings, one game behind Texas A&M and Kansas. They face the Aggies on Wednesday and the Jayhawks next Saturday.

"Our guys wanted to drive and get to the free-throw line," Texas coach Rick Barnes said. "When that happens, it might change the way that teams might have their game plan laid out. It is not going to be easy this time of year. It comes down to not how, but how many (wins). You get them any way you can get them."

"This is a tough place to play," Durant said. "I love it here because the fans are fun and the atmosphere is good. We wanted to come out and get a win on the road."

Durant made 9-of-14 shots, including 5-of-6 from the arc in his seventh 30-point contest of the campaign. He is averaging 28.6 points against conference foes as he builds a case for the Big 12 Player of the Year Award.

Texas opened quickly by scoring the first nine points en route to a 16-2 run in the first 5 1/2 minutes. Durant had 10 points, including a pair of 3-pointers, and Augustin added four in the burst.

"We have to keep going at it and working hard in practice," Augustin said. "We have to play every game like it is our last like we have been doing. We know what we have to do and have to accomplish."

The Sooners managed to cut the deficit to 32-22 on David Godbold's second 3-pointer with 4:40 remaining in the half. However, Durant, Augustin and A.J. Abrams hit baskets from the arc to help give the Longhorns a 41-28 halftime advantage.

"I thought that we maybe did as good a job in the first half of rebounding on both ends as we have done all year," Barnes said. "They did a really good job of taking the transition game away from us because we normally like to get up and down the floor. In the second half, I thought it was just 10 guys going at it."

Despite being held without a basket for the first 11:41 of the second half, Texas managed to maintain a comfortable lead by hitting 9-of-10 free throws before Durant nailed a 3-pointer for a 53-41 advantage.

"Coach told us to go right at them," Durant said. "We shot a lot of free throws in the second half but that made up for us not making many field goals. I think that we did a great job of attacking the rim and getting to the line. That really helped us out."

Austin Johnson scored 14 points and Nate Carter added 13 for Oklahoma (15-12, 6-8), which dropped its fourth straight game and lost for just the fifth time in its last 48 home contests.

"We didn't come out strong to start the first half," Oklahoma coach Jeff Capel said. "Texas got off to a great start. They're a good team. But the second half, I was really proud of our team and the way they fought. We missed some shots coming down the stretch but we fought tremendously."

The Sooners shot just 34 percent (21-of-62) from the floor and were outrebounded, 40-34, as they were swept in the regular-season series with the Longhorns.

"It's tough when you have to look those guys in the eyes and they're trying to figure out what's going on," Capel said. "We came back to a huddle and there were guys almost in tears. As a coach and as their leader, it breaks your heart to see that."

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    TEXAS (20) 41 27 68
    OKLAHOMA 28 30 58 FINAL

    Feb 24 6:01 PM

    TEXAS (20) 41

    Feb 24 4:42 PM