By. Luke Lazarczyk
Perry overtime masterpiece leads K-State past No. 4 Kansas 75-70.
After four straight losses, Bramlage Coliseum was once again the home of chaos. In another overtime victory, Kansas State men’s basketball took down No. 4 Kansas in the Sunflower Showdown 75-70.
The chaotic showdown all led to another overtime bout. In that time, the on-and-off guard Tylor Perry created a masterpiece. Beginning with a circus layup, Perry scored eight of his 26 in the five-minute period, following up his layup with a 3-pointer to go up four and later knocking down free throws.
“My teammates all the time [say] I can’t jump over a phone book so the best thing for me to do is just try to get it up as high off the glass, [because] I’m not jumping over anybody,” Perry said about his made layup.
His performance gave head coach Jerome Tang his 11th overtime victory in as many games.
“In overtime it's about players making plays and them dudes, they just don’t feel the pressure,” Tang said. “I think guys just make plays and their confidence level grows.”
Alongside Perry, guard Cam Carter recorded a 19-point 11-rebound double-double. On the Jayhawk side, center Hunter Dickinson recorded his own 21-point 12-rebound double-double. The rest of the Kansas “Big Four” all scored 13 or more points, but the performance wasn’t enough despite holding the lead for most of the game.
K-State trailed often, but always kept close. This included staying close as nine minutes passed without a TV timeout to start the game. The offenses exchanged baskets as Kansas led the first battle 19-15. The first half back-and-forth ended with Kansas up 32-30.
The second half saw the Jayhawks climb up 41-30 quickly, but again, K-State responded. In less than two-and-a-half minutes, the score was tied up 41-41.
“We just had to settle into the game,” forward Arthur Kaluma said. “I feel like we always come out in the second half and we’re a little flat, so we just had to settle into the game, stick to our plan, stick to our principles.”
K-State matched Kansas with its shooting percentage from the field and from the free throw line. Winning the rebound battle 43-33, something the Wildcats have struggled to do, pushed K-State over KU.
“We knew we had to limit them to one shot to win this game,” Carter said. “Every team, we got to limit them to one shot. In the future we got to build from this.”
Eventually, K-State gained the lead late in the second half, but a pick-and-roll connection from Jayhawk guard Dajuan Harris Jr. and forward K.J. Adams Jr. tied the score 66-66, bringing the chaos into overtime where Perry stole the show to secure the win.
“The guys believe in him and he believes in himself,” Tang said. “The good thing, when that clock is running down, he doesn’t think. I think early in the game he thinks too much and late in the game he doesn’t think.”
The Wildcat upset victory potentially holds major ramifications down the line. Many March Madness predictions had pushed K-State nearly out of the bubble after the Wildcats fell in four straight.
“I’ve said all [year], if you can go 9-9 in this league, you belong in the NCAA tournament,” Tang said.
K-State moves to a 15-8 record with the win and 5-5 in conference play. The Wildcats have four days without a game as they head back on the road to play BYU at 9 p.m. Saturday.
“When we say we take every game, win or lose and we put it in a box and move on, we do that,” Tang said. “You can’t allow wins to go to your head and losses to go to your heart.”