Wildcats Drop Thriller to Baylor 75-73

Jordan Henriquez

Jan. 10, 2012

Final Stats | Quotes | Notes | Photo Gallery 

MANHATTAN, Kan. – A career-high 30 points for Rodney McGruder was not enough for Kansas State to overcome sloppy play, as the Wildcats dropped a close decision to No. 4 Baylor, 75-73.

The Wildcats (12-3, 1-2) defense set the tone early in the first half as they forced Baylor (16-0, 3-0) into eight early turnovers. A 15-4 run by the Wildcats saw the home team take a 21-11 lead early, but the Bears turned the tide and used a 16-4 run to grab its first lead since the 17:12 mark. Both teams would trade baskets near the end of the half but it was the Wildcats who used a 6-0 to end the half and take a 33-31 halftime lead.

The second half saw both teams use scoring runs to trade jabs throughout the entire period. An 8-0 run capped off by an A.J. Walton layup saw Baylor go up 50-46 with 13:12 left in the game. Both teams would continue to trade points until an Angel Rodriguez 3-pointer gave the Wildcats a 68-67 advantage with 5:05 left in the game. Three straight K-State freethrows extended the lead to 71-67, but Baylor used a game winning 8-2 run to finish strong.

Baylor used a stingy defense to grab 13 steals and force 20 Wildcat turnovers. The Bears had four players in double digit scoring with Perry Jones III pouring in 17. Pierre Jackson added a double-double with 10 points and 11 assists.

The Wildcats travel to Norman, Okla., on Saturday as they face the Oklahoma Sooners. The game is set for a 12:30 p.m. tip and can been seen on the Big 12 Network.