Cowboys Escape With Overtime Victory

The Oklahoma State Cowboys snatched victory from the jaws of defeat Wednesday night thanks to some unlikely heroes. Jean-Paul Olukemi scored a career-high 29 points and Roger Franklin had career bests of 13 points and seven rebounds as the Cowboys rallied from a six-point deficit at the end of regulation to capture a 96-87 victory over Iowa State at Gallagher-Iba Arena.

Cowboys Rally For Overtime Victory The Cowboys, now 14-4 overall and 2-2 in Big 12 play, trailed 76-70 with less than a minute to play before rallying to send the game into overtime. Olukemi's conventional three-point play after a steal and layup and Keiton Page's three-point shot tied the game 78-78.

"It's a great, gritty win for our basketball team," Oklahoma State head coach Travis Ford said. "This is a good team we played, and they played well. Iowa State played really well.

"I thought for the first 36 minutes they were a step faster than we were. We were a step slow on everything ... but the last four minutes when we were against the wall and it didn't look too good, our guys made plays. We got deflections, layups, steals, charges.

"I told the guys in the locker room why did we wait 35 minutes to do that? That's actually been our theme since the (Texas) A&M game – to make more plays and be active on defense. We were very stationary for 35 minutes.

"But we had guys making plays, whether it be Roger Franklin, Keiton Page, J.P., Markel (Brtown). I could go down the line. We had guys make plays for us tonight and it was a big difference for us," Ford added.

Oklahoma State pulled ahead 88-84 early in the five-minute extra period when head coach Travis Ford's team used a six-point play to pull away for the victory. Olukemi made his free throw but Iowa State freshman Melvin Ejim was whistled for a contact technical foul against Marshall Moses while fighting for rebounding position.

Page, who finished with 19 points, sank both of his free throws before Olukemi went back to the line for the second of his one-and-one opportunity, and he made it. The Cowboys then got possession of the ball and Page was again fouled, and he sank two more free throws to give the Cowboys a 94-84 lead.

"We were glad to get to overtime the way we were playing," Ford said. "But then we started out the overtime by winning the tip and getting the layin from Markel Brown, and everything seemed to go from there.

"In overtime we played going forward instead of backward, so the last eight or nine minutes of the whole game we were pretty good but the other 38 we just didn't play with the energy we needed to."

Olukemi led all scorers with 29 points, including a perfect 12-of-12 from the free-throw line while contributing 8 rebounds in a team-high 43 minutes of action. Page added 19 and made all six of his free throws, and took a charge on Diante Garrett at the end of regulation when Iowa State had a chance to win it.

Marshall Moses finished with 18 points and 10 rebounds, and Franklin had the best game of his two-year college playing career with 13 points and 7 rebounds while playing a career-high 32 minutes.

The Cowboys return to action Saturday when they travel to Waco, Texas, to face Baylor.

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