STILLWATER, Okla. -- Both coaches knew heading into Wednesday night's game between No. 24 Oklahoma State and Texas-Arlington that points were going to be hard to come by.
Oklahoma State entered the game allowing 58.2 points per contest, good for fourth in the Big 12. Texas-Arlington's defensive field goal percentage of 33.4 is third in the NCAA.
The Cowboys proved to be too athletic and forced 31 turnovers in a 69-44 victory.
Oklahoma State coach Travis Ford had no complaints with the defensive effort from the Cowboys (9-1).
"We're grinding out, we're winning ugly, but that's just who we are," Ford said. "We're winning with defense; we're winning with decent rebounding.
"We got after it. UT-Arlington is kind of like us. Sometimes they have trouble scoring, and they need a couple of guys to score. We needed to lock down on a couple of guys, and we did that. Our guys executed the game plan to perfection. We wanted to cut down on a couple of guys, and that's exactly what we did."
Coming off a career-high 18 points, Mavericks guard Karol Gruszecki did not score and committed six turnovers. Cameron Catlett, Gruszecki's backcourt partner, had eight turnovers. Twenty-one of the points for the Mavericks (5-3) came from reserves.
"Nothing like a good slice of humble pie for your Christmas," Mavericks coach Scott Cross said. "Oklahoma State played a very good game. They showed how good they were tonight."
Texas-Arlington dropped to 5-65 all-time against Big 12 schools, including 0-3 this season. The Mavericks dropped a 63-59 decision to Oklahoma on Nov. 16 and fell 70-54 at Texas on Dec. 1.
"(Oklahoma State) has great size at all positions," Cross said. "Texas gave us a hard time with their size and athleticism and Oklahoma State is the same way. I think our guys just got a little scared and tentative offensively. Our 31 turnovers obviously played a part but you have to give (the Cowboys) credit because they defend. Philip Jurick is a big old boy. He can really disrupt things inside."
Jurick, a 6-foot-11 center, scored six points and had eight offensive rebounds. He did not block a shot but disrupted the Mavericks on both ends of the court.
"That was a big part of the scouting report," Jurick said. "They had trouble handling pressure and didn't do too well with double teams, so we embraced that and did it."
Texas-Arlington committed 20 turnovers in the first half, four in the first 4 minutes, and Oklahoma State built a 13-3 advantage on the way to a 36-17 halftime lead.
The visitors did not hit the 20-point mark until Drew Charles' short jumper with 14:20 remaining in the game.
Kirby Gardner's basket put the Cowboys up 46-23 with 10:34 left and the Mavericks got no closer than 16 points the rest of the way.
Forte hit three 3-pointers in the final 6 minutes, the third putting the Cowboys up 26 points with just under 4 minutes left.
Four early turnovers by the Mavericks and three 3-pointers helped Oklahoma State build a 13-3 lead in the opening 4 minutes. Thirteen minutes in, Texas-Arlington had 13 turnovers and trailed 25-8. Smart's 3-pointer made it 28-10 with 6 minutes left in the half.
The Mavericks used a 7-0 run to get within 28-17 with 3:29 left in the half. But the Cowboys reeled off eight straight points to end the half with a 36-17 lea. Brown led all scorers at halftime with 13 points.
Oklahoma State improved to 178-4 against nonconference opponents at home since 1987.