The Cowboys came into Senior Day desperately needing a win to shore up their NCAA hopes. They had plenty of opportunities but let a few too many slip through their fingers.
Oklahoma State fell to No. 14 Kansas State 73-68 on Saturday inside Gallagher-Iba Arena. The Cowboys held an eight-point lead with 12 minutes to go, but the Wildcats got hot and the Cowboys suffered through the type of scoring drought that’s become a little too common this season.
Missed opportunities and turnovers were killers. The Cowboys’ 11 turnovers weren’t egregious, by their standard, but many of them were unforced and all were untimely, leading to 10 Kansas State points. OSU also came up empty far too many times in the paint. OSU missed 12 layups including five in the final 11 minutes of a game they lost by five.
For the third straight game, Kalib Boone picked up his second foul but Tyreek Hill did yeoman’s work in his stead, scoring six in the first half. But unlike the last two games in which foul trouble took him out of the picture, Boone had a huge second half, scoring 14 of team-high 18 points on just eight shots. He kept the Cowboys in it late.
In one stretch late in the game, Kalib Boone followed up back-to-back blocked shots with a bucket to pull OSU within two with 3:50 left. He also went 3-for-4 at the charity stripe over the last few minutes.
Caleb Asberry added 13 points on nine shots and John-Michael Wright and Bryce Thompson scored 12 and 11, respectively.
But once again, OSU had a hard time corralling Kansas State point guard Marquis Nowell. He dropped 20, making five 3s, in the Wildcats’ win in Manhattan and then dropped 22 in Stillwater, nailing three triples. Keyontae Johnson added 17 points and five boards for the Wildcats.
The Cowboys used an 11-0 run at the end of the first to take a six-point lead with a minute and a half to play in the first but gave up four quick points to take a 35-33 lead into the break. Neither team led by more than two possessions until the Cowboys pushed their lead to eight, briefly, midway through the second.
John-Michael Wright knocked down his second 3 of the game to give the Cowboys life, but OSU could not trade deep balls with the Wildcats’ shooters. K-State shot 5-of-11 from beyond the arc in the second half to OSU’s 2-for-12.
After taking that lead, the Cowboys missed eight consecutive field goal attempts and went on a scoring drought of 2:27. Meanwhile, the Wildcats got hot, knocking down six of eight and orchestrating a 10-point swing to take a 57-55 lead with just under seven minutes to go.
OSU was in the bonus for the final 14:18 of game time and in the double bounce from the 9:08 mark on. OSU went 11-of-15 from the line in the second half.
Oklahoma State went on another drought, not making a field goal for nearly four straight minutes until Thompson’s too-little, too-late layup with nine seconds remaining pulled the Pokes within five.
With the loss, Oklahoma State moves to 16-12 and 7-8 in the Big 12. They’ll have another opportunity to get that signature, albeit after a short turnaround, when they host No. 9 Baylor on Monday at 8 p.m.