(NOTE: The TCU/Texas recap appears in a separate post.)
Oklahoma State 85, Kansas 80
Travis Ford exhaled for the first time all game.
After establishing a big first-half lead, Oklahoma State watched it all melt away Saturday. But in one of the rare instances of a team refusing to lose at intimidating Allen Fieldhouse, Brown and Smart managed to hold things together down the stretch against second-ranked Kansas.
Together, they helped the Cowboys pull out an 85-80 victory that ended the Jayhawks’ nation-leading 18-game winning streak — and their 33-game streak at the Phog, too.
“We just beat one of the top teams in the country, and a great team at that,” said Smart, who had seven of his 25 points in the closing minutes. “It’s hard for teams to come into their home court and get a victory. We’re one of the few teams that have done it. We couldn’t believe it.”
That may account for his impromptu gymnastics.
“I was so ecstatic about the victory,” the freshman said, “it just came to me to do it.”
Brown finished with 28 points for the Cowboys (15-5, 5-3 Big 12), who hadn’t beaten a top-5 team on the road since knocking off the Jayhawks on Jan. 2, 1958.
Oklahoma State stunned the Jayhawks by building a 14-point lead in the first half, but Kansas had pulled ahead 64-60 on a 3-pointer by Naadir Tharpe midway through the second half.
The Jayhawks still led by six when Phil Forte hit a 3-pointer from the wing with 4:15 left to begin a 13-2 charge, allowing Oklahoma State to seize control.
The Cowboys’ stretched the lead to 77-69 with 50 seconds remaining, but the Jayhawks (19-2, 7-1) managed to play savvy defense and take advantage of a couple missed free throws. Andrew White III’s 3-pointer made it 78-75, and his free throw made it 78-76 with 36 seconds left in the game.
Forte, an 89-percent foul shooter, made two at the line to restore a cushion, and White answered with two of his own. Smart added a free throw, and Johnson’s layup cut the Cowboys’ lead to 81-80.
Forte calmly made two more free throws with 7.9 seconds remaining, and Johnson turned the ball over near mid-court before Kansas could even get up a tying 3-point attempt. Forte got ahold of the ball and laid it in at the buzzer to punctuate the victory.
Kansas 52, Oklahoma 50
NORMAN, Okla. — On a day when he struggled to make shots, Angel Rodriguez delivered from the line for No. 18 Kansas State.
The sophomore guard hit two free throws with 5.6 seconds remaining to give the Wildcats a 52-50 win over Oklahoma on Saturday night.
Even though Rodriguez was 1 for 6 from the floor and his team wasted a late eight-point lead, coach Bruce Weber had confidence in Rodriguez to make a play.
Rodriguez drove by Sooners guard Sam Grooms into the lane and was fouled. He then put his shooting woes behind him and made both free throws.
“I was just saying, ‘It’s just another free throw like you practice by yourself in the gym,’” Rodriguez said. “I like the pressure. I think I function better with pressure.”
The free throws ended an 8-0 run by the Sooners in the final two minutes that tied the game for the first time since the 7:30 mark of the first half.
With Oklahoma trailing 50-42, Romero Osby scored the last of his 13 points on a three-point play to pull the Sooners within five with 1:58 to go. Grooms then tied it with a 3-pointer and a driving layup with 13 seconds left.
Weber opted not to call a timeout, instead letting Rodriguez take the game into his hands.
“I told him to push it and see what happens,” Weber said. “If it gets to where we don’t have anything, I’m going to call timeout. We practice that all the time. Sometimes you call timeout and it gives the defense a chance to set up. (Oklahoma coach) Lon (Kruger) does a great job of taking things away, so we thought it was better to just go with it. It was a double ball-screen, Angel read it, got to the bucket and was fortunate to get the foul and get the free throws.”
Just as Weber had done, Kruger also did not call a timeout and Grooms had a chance to win it for Oklahoma. However, his 3-pointer at the buzzer was short. The win kept the Wildcats (17-4, 6-2) in second place in the Big 12, one game behind Kansas.
For the Sooners (14-6, 5-3), it was their third loss in their last five games after starting Big 12 play 3-0.
Iowa St. 79, Baylor 71
AMES, Iowa — Will Clyburn notched his sixth double-double of the season with 28 points and 10 rebounds as Iowa State beat Baylor 79-71 on Saturday night in a tense Big 12 Conference game.
Clyburn, a senior, sank three 3-pointers on an uncharacteristically icy night from beyond the arc for the Cyclones (15-6, 5-3), who pulled into a four-way tie for third place in the conference standings.
Iowa State won its league-leading 19th straight game at home and extended its conference home win streak to 11.
The Bears (14-7, 5-3) lost their second consecutive game and fell to 0-11 all-time in Ames. Pierre Jackson led Baylor with 23 points.
Georges Niang added 17 points for the Cyclones, who missed their first 13 3-point attempts.
West Virginia 77, Texas Tech 61
LUBBOCK, Texas — Freshman Eron Harris scored 15 of his 18 points in the second half to lead West Virginia over Texas Tech 77-61 on Saturday.
Harris hit 3 of 5 3-pointers in the second half to spark West Virginia after missing all four tries from beyond the arc in the first half.
Aaric Murray added 12 points for the Mountaineers (10-11, 3-5), who were 10 of 18 on 3-point attempts.
West Virginia never trailed but the Red Raiders kept it close briefly in the second half.
Ty Nurse scored 14 points for Texas Tech (9-10, 2-6) and Jaye Crockett added 13.
After outrebounding the Red Raiders 10-2 early in the game, West Virginia finished with 24 to Texas Tech’s 22.
Turnovers, especially in the second half, hurt the Red Raiders as the Mountaineers got 27 points off Texas Tech’s 22 turnovers.