No. 25 K-State Snaps 11-Game Skid at Oklahoma State

Senior Jamar Samuels earned his ninth career double-double at OSU with 12 points and 12 rebounds.

Jan. 21, 2012

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MANHATTAN, Kan. – Kansas State ended an 11-game losing streak at historic Gallagher-Iba Arena on Saturday afternoon, as the Wildcats held off a late Oklahoma State rally for a 66-58 win before 10,338 fans.

With the win, K-State improved to 14-4 overall on the season and 3-3 in Big 12 play, while Oklahoma State dropped to below .500 at 9-10 overall and 2-4 in Big 12 play with the loss.  The victory was the first in Stillwater for the Wildcats since a 75-62 win in overtime on Jan. 8, 1993, as head coach Frank Martin became the first coach since Dana Altman to guide his K-State team to victory. 

Martin, who has a 17-18 record on the road in Big 12 play, has now won in every league arena except Mizzou Arena (Missouri) and Allen Fieldhouse (Kansas).  Putting Martin’s 17 Big 12 road victories in perspective, you would have to count up Kansas State’s road victories (16) in the last four years of Big Eight play and the first 10 years of Big 12 to come close his total in five seasons.  

K-State shot just 36.4 percent from the field, including 21.4 percent from 3-point range, but was able to take advantage of its superior rebounding skills to gain the victory.  The Wildcats held a 50-29 advantage on the glass, including 22 offensive rebounds, to earn an 18-4 edge in second-chance points.  Overall, the squad was stellar defensively, holding Oklahoma State to just 34.8 percent shooting, including 6.3 percent from 3-point range.  Nearly half of the Cowboys’ points came from the free throw line (25).

Freshman Angel Rodriguez and junior Rodney McGruder paced three Wildcats in double figures with 14 points each, while senior Jamar Samuels grabbed his ninth career double-double and fourth this season with 12 points and a game-high 12 rebounds.  K-State is now 9-0 when Samuels has a double-double.  Despite an off-shooting day (5-of-13), McGruder still led the team in scoring for the eighth straight game.  It was Rodriguez’s first double-figure scoring game in Big 12 play, while he also added six rebounds, three assists and two steals in 22 minutes of action.

Senior guard Keiton Page led all scorers with 17 points for Oklahoma State, but it came on just 4-of-17 field goals, including 1-of-9 from 3-point range.  Page was dogged all day by K-State’s Will Spradling and Martavious Irving.  Junior Markel Brown was also in double figures with 14 points, while Brian Williams and Michael Cobbins added nine and eight points, respectively.

K-State built as much as a 13-point lead in the second half, including a 57-44 advantage after a lay-up by Samuels with 4:24 left.  However, Oklahoma State used a 12-2 run, capped by the first and only Page 3-pointer, to cut the deficit to 59-56 with exactly two minutes left on the clock. 

The steady Rodriguez pushed the Wildcats back ahead by converting on 4-of-6 free throws over the next three possessions, giving the team a 63-56 lead with just 35 seconds remaining.  McGruder knocked down 3-of-4 free throws in the last 18 seconds for the final margin of victory.

K-State managed to hold off a rally by OSU to take a 31-24 into the lockerroom at halftime.  The Wildcats shot 41.4 percent from the field, including 37.5 percent from 3-point range, and held a 25-16 edge on the glass.  However, the team squandered opportunities to take a much larger lead with 10 turnovers and by converting just 4-of-14 free throws.  Rodriguez led all scorers with eight points.

The Wildcats led by as many as 11 points in the first half after McGruder nailed a long 3-pointer with 8:53 left.  However, the pesky Cowboys rallied to within 24-23 with 3:59 remaining on a 3-point play by Cobbins to cap a 10-0 run.  K-State was able to respond with a 7-1 run to end the half.  OSU shot just 32 percent in the first half, including 0-of-7 from 3-point range.

Kansas State continues its road swing with a trip to Lubbock, Texas to face Texas Tech (7-11, 0-6 Big 12) on Wednesday night at 8 p.m. on ESPNU.  The Wildcats have won four of the last five meetings with the Red Raiders, including a 94-60 win in Manhattan last season.