Sooners fall short to Wildcats

NORMAN, Okla. -- Freshman star Michael Beasley scored 32 points, including the game-winner with 2.3 seconds left, as Kansas State outlasted Oklahoma 84-82 on Saturday in the Big 12 Conference opener for both teams.

Beasley grabbed 11 rebounds for his 14th double-double of the season, and another freshman, Bill Walker, added 22 points for Kansas State (11-4, 1-0), which won at the Lloyd Noble Center for the first time since Jan. 20, 1996. That stretch included five straight losses to Oklahoma (12-4, 0-1).

The loss ended the Sooners' five-game winning streak, their longest under second-year coach Jeff Capel, and likely will keep Oklahoma out of next week's rankings after the Sooners had risen to 26th in the balloting for the Top 25.

In a game in which neither team led by more than five points, every surge was met with a countersurge. With the game tied 62-62, Walker had a 3-point play that he followed with a drive down the lane for a dunk to put the Wildcats up 67-62 with 9:02 left, matching their biggest lead of the game to that point.

Then Oklahoma freshman Blake Griffin scored on a putback and added a pair of free throws before spinning around Beasley for a dunk to put the Sooners ahead with 6:29 left. Beasley answered with a bucket of his own to again give Kansas State the lead 20 seconds later.

And so it went.

Walker broke a 75-75 tie with a bucket with 2:01 left, and Clent Stewart -- a Tulsa, Okla., high school product -- made a 3-pointer with 1:09 left to give Kansas State an 82-78 bulge.

Griffin, who overcame a sore right shoulder to finish with a career-high 27 points and 14 rebounds -- his sixth double-double of the season -- hit a pair of free throws with 47.9 seconds left, then stole the ball and rumbled downcourt for a dunk that tied the game with 24 seconds left.

After two Kansas State time-outs, freshman point guard Jacob Pullen took the inbounds pass for the Wildcats and found Beasley in the lane. Beasley collided with Griffin while making his move to the basket, but no foul was called.

As Capel was trying to call timeout, Oklahoma guard Austin Johnson threw up a half-court heave at the buzzer, which hit off the backboard and front of the rim, preserving the win for the Wildcats in their first true road game of the season.

Kansas State shot a season-high 56.4 percent from the field -- the highest percentage by an Oklahoma opponent during Capel's tenure -- while Oklahoma made 52.8 percent of its shots.

Beasley's 32-point outing matched his second-highest of the season. It was his sixth game of 30 or more points, one shy of Kansas State's single-season record, set by Bob Boozer during the 1958-59 season and matched by Norris Coleman during the 1985-86 season.

It was the second straight game in which Griffin recorded a career high in points, as he had 26 points in a win Tuesday over Mount St. Mary's. Longar Longar added 18 points for Oklahoma, while David Godbold had 15 and Tony Crocker had 13.


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