ORU's Byford Solid In First Career Start
Each making their first career starts, Corbin Byford and David Mason made the most of their opportunities and led Oral Roberts past Dallas Baptist 69-55 on Saturday afternoon at the Mabee Center.
Mason had 10 assists and five rebounds, both career highs for the senior, while Byford set new career highs with 15 points and six rebounds. Mason's 10 assists are the most for a Golden Eagle since Korey Billbury had 10 last season against Lamar.
"He (Byford) felt a lot more at ease today," said Coach Scott Sutton. "A lot of times when you start you have a lot more confidence and certainly when you knock down your first shot it helps your confidence and I hope that it will carry over. It was fun to watch David play out there. I think the other guys can learn a lot from watching how hard he plays."
Shawn Glover led the way for ORU with 20 points on an efficient 7-of-8 shooting effort. Glover also had a team-high nine rebounds, despite playing just 26 minutes. As a team, ORU shot 49 percent (23-47) for the game, but connected on 60 percent (12-20) in the first half.
ORU also dominated the boards, holding a 41-21 rebounding advantage over the Patriots. The Golden Eagles played 11 players in the game, with everyone logging at least 10 minutes.
DBU was led by Jonathan Perry's 15 points, while Myles Johnson added 11. The remaining three starters each added nine points as 53 of the 55 Patriot points came from the starting five.
Adrion Webber and Byford carried ORU early. Webber scored the first five points of the game, and a 3-for-3 shooting start for Byford, including a pair of 3-pointers, gave Byford the next eight ORU points, helping the Golden Eagles open up a 13-7 lead.
DBU finally found its offensive rhythm and rattled off the next 10 points and the Patriots took their first lead of the game midway through the first half. The 10-0 run gave DBU a 17-13 lead before Glover halted it with a 3-pointer.
Including that triple from Glover, ORU out-scored DBU 22-7 in the final 8:28 of the first half, and opened its largest lead of 11, 35-24, at the break after five-straight points from Billbury. Glover and Billbury combined to score 18 of the team's last 22 points of the half.
After giving up a pair of free throws to start the second half, ORU got back-to-back layups by Drew Wilson, and a free throw by Denell Henderson to make it a 14-point game at 40-26.
The Golden Eagles continued to extend the lead out and made it 48-30 with 11 minutes to play, and it would not get below 10 until the final two minutes when a Johnson 3-pointer made it 62-53.
Perry hit a pair of free throws with just over a minute left and cut it to an eight point game, but Glover answered on the other end with four free throws to hold off the Patriots. A layup by Mason gave the Golden Eagles the final 14-point margin at 69-55.
ORU will break for Christmas, but will be back in action in Waco, Texas, as the Golden Eagles take on Baylor on December 30.