Notebook: Anei shows off offensive skills in victory against Kangaroos

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Oklahoma State's Yor Anei plays defense during the Oklahoma State vs Rogers State exhibition game on Friday, Nov. 1, 2019 in Gallagher-Iba Arena in Stillwater.

Yor Anei has previously joked that he’s a combo guard, not a center. 

A 6-foot-10, 235-pound combo guard. That's certainly a first.

While he is known primarily as a defensive shot-blocker, Anei showed off his offensive skills in the Oklahoma State men’s basketball team’s 69-51 victory against Kansas City on Saturday at Gallagher-Iba Arena.

Anei, who had eight blocks in the Cowboys’ win against Oral Roberts, led all scorers with 13 points. 

“He’s got a lot more confidence,” coach Mike Boynton said. “He feels stronger in the post, but he’s also been able to step out both games and make a 15-17-foot jump shot.” 

Right out of the gate in the second half, Anei scored six points in quick succession. He opened with a mid-range jump shot and then scored a tip-in and hookshot, all within the first two minutes.

The OSU student section cheered Anei's name as he was subbed off.

Anei said after the game that he was kidding around about being a combo guard. But from his performance, the skill is clearly there. 

“I feel like I got a little bit stronger and I’m able to hold my position for a little bit longer now,” Anei said. 

Roessink exits with knee injury

As the Cowboys attempted to extend their lead before halftime, they, unfortunately, lost one of their players in the process. 

Jonathan Laurent trudged down the paint and dished the ball off to freshman Hidde Roessink. Laurent was called for the offensive foul as he slammed into Javan White.

White fell down right into Roessink as he took the charge, and Roessink immediately fell down and clutched his knee. 

He stayed on the ground in pain as OSU’s medical staff rushed to his side. Roessink stayed on the court for a few minutes before he was helped up by the medical staff. 

All of GIA stood up and applauded for Roessink as he went back to the locker rooms for further evaluation. 

Roessink’s injury has been classified as mild. 

Cowboys focus on scoring in the paint

The Cowboys scored 26 of their 80 points in the paint against Oral Roberts.

Boynton said he wanted them to score more. He received his wish as OSU scored 42 points in the paint against the Kangaroos.

“We did a real good job at pushing the ball,” Avery Anderson III said. “(Issac Likekele and Lindy Waters III) got the ball up the floor and Yor running the floor to get the ball on the side, so we did very good on that.”

OSU only shot 10 3-pointers the whole game compared to 24 on Wednesday. The Cowboys worked on getting players such as Anei and Kalib Boone the ball in the post. 

The guards were even using physical play to get in the paint instead of settling for the midrange jumpers. 

“We wanted to know if we could, given the opportunity, dominate a game inside,” Boynton said. “Our guys understood the game plan and executed it.”

sports.ed@ocolly.com