Oklahoma State has made it a habit of falling behind by double digits in the first half of Big 12 games this season. Thus, the Cowboys found themselves in unfamiliar territory on Wednesday night when they jumped out to a 12-point lead over No. 17 Baylor at Gallagher-Iba Arena.
But the Bears outscored the Cowboys 7-2 over the final two minutes to complete a season sweep with a 69-65 victory on the 15th anniversary of the 2001 plane crash in which 10 members of the Oklahoma State basketball family lost their lives.
OSU is now 10-10 overall and 2-6 in Big 12 play, while Baylor improves to 16-4 and remains tied for the conference lead at 6-2.
The Cowboys took a 63-62 lead on Jeff Newberry’s two free throws with 2:06 left to play but back-to-back turnovers on their next two possessions cost them dearly. Chris Olivier’s layup allowed OSU to pull within 66-65 with 27 seconds remaining but Taurean Prince and Rico Gathers hit free throws in the final moments to sew up the win for the Bears.
Olivier led the Cowboys with 17 points, while Leyton Hammonds added 12 points and 6 rebounds. Jawun Evans finished with 9 points, 10 assists, 4 rebounds and 2 steals.
The Bears were led by Prince (17 points), Gathers (16 and 9 rebounds), and Lester Medford (12 points).
The Cowboys are back in action Saturday when they go on the road to face Auburn in the Big 12/SEC Challenge.