Oklahoma State 57, Kansas State 56

Saturday, January 17th 2004, 12:00 am
By: News On 6

MANHATTAN, Kan. (AP) _ John Lucas was positive that Oklahoma State would come back after trailing 39-28 at halftime.

The 5-foot-11 point guard is either prophetic or just good.

He scored a game-high 20 points and Tony Allen blocked Jarrett Hart's potential game-winning 3-point shot as Oklahoma State rallied to beat Kansas State 57-56 on Saturday night.

``I told my teammates in the locker room that I wasn't going to lose this game,'' Lucas said. ``We finally got things turned around and won a great ball game.''

Oklahoma State (12-2, 2-1 Big 12) came back from a 16-point deficit in the second half to win its first Big 12 road game since beating Nebraska on Feb. 12, 2003.

Kansas State (8-5, 0-2) had its nine-game home winning streak snapped in a game that coach Jim Wooldridge called his most disappointing at Kansas State.

``It's really hard to explain it, and it's really hard to take,'' Wooldridge said. ``We had plenty of chances to win it.''

The Wildcats led by 10 points or more for most of the first half and took their biggest lead of the game at 50-34 early in the second half.

But Oklahoma State picked up the pressure and forced 14 second-half turnovers, 25 in the game, leaving the Wildcats stunned.

``There were so many turnovers from loss of concentration and lack of confidence,'' Wooldridge said. ``Twenty-five turnovers against anyone is pretty amazing.''

Oklahoma State then held Kansas State to one field goal in 12 minutes of play and went on a 21-4 run. Lucas scored 10 points during the stretch, including a layup that gave the Cowboys a 55-54 lead with 2:26 left.

``I kept telling them that if you get back down to 10 you will win,'' Oklahoma State coach Eddie Sutton said. ``I was most pleased to come from behind. Somewhere down the line we will be down again.''

With the Cowboys up 57-56, Kansas State's Jeremiah Massey drew a charge from Daniel Bobik with 26.7 seconds left, but Schyler Thomas threw the ball out of bounds.

Allen then missed the front end of a 1-and-1 with 12.4 seconds remaining but made up for it with his play on Hart.

``I was surprised that he shot so far out,'' Allen said of Hart. ``I knew he was going to shoot because he set his feet. I just jumped up for the block and got it.''

Lucas scored 20 points and Allen had 13 for the Cowboys. Marques Hayden led the Wildcats with 15.

Oklahoma State has won seven of the last eight meetings between the schools.

``It just sort of snuck up on us,'' Hayden said.