(4) Oklahoma St 79

(20-5, 10-4 Big 12)

(8) Kansas 81

(21-4, 11-3 Big 12)

    4:00 PM ET, February 27, 2005

    Allen Fieldhouse, Lawrence, Kansas

    1 2 T
    #4OKST 39 4079
    #8KU 39 4281

    Top Performers

    Oklahoma St: J. Lucas III 22 Pts, 2 Reb, 3 Ast, 1 Stl

    Kansas: W. Simien 32 Pts, 12 Reb, 1 Ast, 1 Blk

    Kansas shoots 66 percent to end three-game skid

    LAWRENCE, Kan. (AP) -- If this game does not ultimately decide the Big 12 championship, it should have.

    Kansas (No. 7 ESPN/USA Today; No. 8 AP) shot 66 percent from the field, No. 4 Oklahoma State hit 59 percent and both old rivals played almost flawlessly in key stretches Sunday before the Jayhawks finally emerged with an 81-79 victory.

    "Certainly, for me, it was an honor to coach in this game," Kansas' Bill Self said. "This will go down as one of the great ones to ever be played in this building."

    Wayne Simien had a career-high 32 points and Aaron Miles hit a running layup with 37 seconds to go for the Jayhawks (21-4, 11-3), who have a one-game lead over Oklahoma State (20-5, 10-4) and Oklahoma (No. 23 ESPN/USA Today; No. 22 AP) with two games to play.

    Simien had 12 rebounds and was 10-of-11 from the foul line, breaking the school record with 34 consecutive free throws as the Jayhawks snapped their first three-game losing streak in 11 years.

    "I think you could make a case that for today at least, there was not a better player in America," Self said.

    John Lucas, one of four senior starters for Oklahoma State, hit his first nine shots but he missed a long 3-point attempt seconds before the final buzzer.

    "What a great college basketball game," Oklahoma State coach Eddie Sutton said. "When both teams play like that, it is a shame that one has to lose."

    Lucas' first miss came with 1:31 to go and the game tied at 78. With 37 seconds left, Miles, the Big 12 assists leader, scored the go-ahead basket for an 80-78 lead.

    "Christian (Moody) did a good job setting a screen," Miles said. "Dub (Simien) cleared out the lane and I hit the shot."

    Oklahoma State freshman JamesOn Curry was fouled by Moody and went to the line with 25 seconds left. He made the second free throw to make it a one-point game. Miles was fouled with 19 seconds to go and he hit the second for the 81-79 lead.

    After dribbling between the circle for a few seconds, Lucas launched the 3-point attempt that hit the rim.

    "When it left his hand it was like it was in slow motion," Simien said. "I thought he was going to make it. He seemed like he couldn't miss all day long."

    Fast-paced throughout, this was a game that was befitting of a major conference championship showdown. The teams combined to shoot 62 percent.

    "This was a great ball game," Lucas said. "One of the best ball games all year."

    Lucas, last season's Big 12 player of the year, had 22 points while Joey Graham added 19 and Curry 15.

    Sutton, who has 775 career victories, will probably retire without ever leading the Cowboys to a victory in Kansas' Allen Fieldhouse, where his Oklahoma State teams are 0-11 under him.

    "If we both played like that, we would beat a lot of people," Sutton said. "This was a good game even though we lost. It was still a great game for us."

    Keith Langford had 14 points and Miles added 13 for Kansas.

    After last Monday's loss at Oklahoma, the Kansas players declared themselves off-limits to the media and Self confiscated all their cell phones.

    "I don't know if that helped them at all," Self said. "But if they think it did. ..."

    Langford glided in for a layup with 7:39 left that put the Jayhawks up 67-64.

    But the Cowboys needed only 21 seconds to take back the lead. Graham hit a short jumper in the lane and Lucas followed with a 12-footer to put Oklahoma State on top 68-67.

    At that point, the Jayhawks were shooting 70 percent (28-of-40) but still trailed.

    Graham then made his first 3-pointer and the lead went to 74-67 when Ivan McFarlin outfought Simien for a rebound and Lucas hit his fourth 3-pointer in as many tries.

    Simien made two free throws and Miles hit one from beyond the arc, slicing the lead to 76-72, but back came Curry with a 14-footer that made it 78-72.

    Two free throws by Simien and Langford's turnaround jumper sliced the lead to 78-76 and then with 1:31 to play, Simien went to the line and tied it 78-all.

    The Cowboys, gunning for their first consecutive conference titles since 1953-54, have home games left against Texas A&M and Texas. The Jayhawks are home on Wednesday against Kansas State and then end their season at Missouri. Oklahoma finishes at Texas and Texas Tech.

    Simien hit his first four free throws and ran his streak to 34 straight in the first half, setting the school record. The 6-foot-9 power forward hit his first five shots of the first half and had 14 points at halftime.

    Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press


    Team Stat Comparison

    Points 79 81
    FG Made-Attempted 31-53 (.585) 31-47 (.660)
    3P Made-Attempted 9-19 (.474) 4-8 (.500)
    FT Made-Attempted 8-9 (.889) 15-23 (.652)
    Fouls (Tech/Flagrant) 20 (0/0) 13 (0/0)
    Largest Lead 7 8

    2004-05 Season

    » Feb 27, 2005 @KU 81, OKST 79Recap
    Mar 12, 2005 OKST 78, @KU 75Recap