And this time, it was behind an explosive offensive performance from guard Steven Pledger, who led the Sooners with 26 points on 10-of-15 shooting, including 4-for-8 from 3-point range.
OU leapt out to an early 4-0 lead and trailed just once in the contest, at 5-4, as it secured its fourth straight victory to open up the 2011 season.
Just more than nine minutes in, the Sooners opened up a double-digit lead.
It only expanded from there.
A 20-0 run that lasted from the 5:11 mark of the first half until the first minute of the second half allowed the Sooners to go up by 25 points, when they had a 44-19 advantage.
However, the Broncos methodically worked their way back into it.
By the eight-minute media timeout, OU still led by 18, and at the four-minute media timeout, it had a 14-point advantage.
That's Santa Clara closed to within six at 79-73 in the final four minutes.
But six straight Sooner free throws allowed OU to close out with an impressive 12-point victory.
Santa Clara's Evan Roquemore led all scorers with 27, while guard Kevin Foster added 19 and forward Raymond Cowels III had 11.
Fitzgerald was a horse in the paint, tying his career-high of 13 rebounds and good for a double-double, and forward Romero Osby also had 10 boards.
The Sooners will face Saint Louis in the Championship Round at 8 p.m. CT Sunday.