By. Trey Thomas
And-1 Kaluma 3-pointer uplifts K-State to top 10 victory.
A brutal last-second loss Saturday occurred prior to Tuesday night's theatrical chaos. Kansas State men’s basketball narrowly defeated No. 9 Baylor in a 68-64 overtime win. The win gave head coach Jerome Tang, former Baylor assistant coach, his 10th overtime victory at K-State in as many games.
The first half was a sloppy one as both teams combined for 17 total turnovers. Baylor’s offensive rebounding proved crucial, racking up 11 points off 10 boards.
The Wildcats still battled defensively, cornering Baylor into forcing multiple shots up as the shot clock would wind down. The Bears ranked number one in the country in 3-point percentage, but the Wildcats brought constant pressure and only allowed Baylor to go 1-11 from beyond-the-arc. The half ended in the Bears’ favor 31-26.
Baylor’s struggles from deep continued as it would go 2-11 in the second half. The turnovers decreased as well, making for a more fluid half of play. K-State's offense still struggled to score as the Bears’ defense forced a near six-minute scoring drought after the Wildcats took a 45-42 lead.
Eventually the offense regained some steam as guard Tylor Perry knocked down a pair of free throws, giving K-State a 53-52 lead.
Baylor would then take a one-point lead off a layup from guard Jayden Nunn.
Perry once again found himself on the line despite a poor shooting performance, converting one of two to tie the game at 54. The Bears could not find a game-winning shot and the game went to overtime.
“We work on these situations a lot during practice,” forward Arthur Kaluma said. “Once we go to overtime it was just another thing that we’ve done before.”
Overtime started back and forth. Things looked rocky for K-State as guard Cam Carter fouled out after dropping 18 points on the night. The Wildcats found themselves down five with 1:12 on the clock. With little time, K-State made the most of the final minutes. Freshman Guard R.J. Jones knocked down one of the biggest shots of his early career, bringing the deficit from five to two.
“We knew we couldn’t panic,” Perry said. “We knew we had to believe in what we do everyday.”
Kaluma followed up the freshman with an even more crowd-shaking play. The Creighton transfer nailed a huge four-point play to give the Wildcats a two-point lead with 20 seconds left. The Bears could not respond, and K-State would win 68-64 in overtime.
Perry joined Carter in finishing with 18 points and racked up four steals. Kaluma, the night’s savior, finished with a 12-point, 10-rebound double-double.
K-State will stay at home and face Oklahoma State at 6 p.m. Saturday. Oklahoma State has yet to win a conference game this season, starting 0-4.