From an objective point-of-view, there is unlikely to be a more entertaining game of college hoops this year. It was one of those up-tempo, no-blood no-foul physical affairs where the refs let the kids play. It was a tilt so overheated that Cowboy coach Sean Sutton nearly swooned on the OSU bench during the second period. But that's before things got really interesting.
Durant and D. J. Augustin drained treys in the final minute of regulation to erase a five-point Cowboy lead to send this one into OT. Consecutive treys from Justin Mason and Durant gave Texas a 77-75 lead during the extra session, but a Boggan bucket knotted it at 77. JamesOn Curry gave the Cowboys an 81-79 advantage before a wide-open A.J. Abrams misfired from outside the arc. Texas' tenacious D forced a shot-clock violation with 36.4 remaining. The Horns could have drained the clock but Durant's turnaround jumper tied things at 81 with 25.5 ticks remaining. Boggan's slam gave the home team a brief lead before Augustin's acrobatic layup with 12.9 seconds left forced the second overtime.
Damion James' fouled-out early in the second OT while Boggan's traditional three-point play gave the Cowboys an 89-84 advantage. Augustin's runner, followed by a pair of Abrams' FTs, brought Texas within one. Durant's trey knotted the affair at 91 with 62 seconds left. Walkon Tyler Hatch scored his first points of the contest to give OSU a two-point edge but Durant's slam with 16 seconds left sent this one into the third OT.
It was a must-win home game for OSU, which raised its record to 16-2 (2-1 in Big 12) following its recent route at Kansas. The Horns, nationally ranked in both major polls for the first time since mid-November, dropped to 13-4, 3-1 in league play.
It was a monster night for both Durant and Boggan. The Longhorn freshman, who entered Wednesday's game averaging 33 ppg in league play, notched 37 points, 11 rebounds and three blocked shots. Boggan tallied 39 points and, incredibly, 19 boards. He was just 1-of-5 from outside the arc but hit the one that counted most. All five Texas starters finished in double-figures. Augustin finished with 19 points, six assists and three steals while Justin Mason was right behind with 18 points. Despite finishing with 13 points, it was an off-night for A. J. Abrams. The only non-freshman in Texas' starting lineup went 2-of-14 from the field, both three-pointers.
Texas shot 41 percent (35-of-84) from the floor, including 12-of-33 (36 percent) outside the arc. The Cowboys were a crisp 39-of-80 (48 percent) and 6-of-23 (34 percent) from thee-point range. Texas won the battle of the boards, 46-44, and forced 21 turnovers. The Horns turned the ball over 18 times.
The Horns opened in man defense and switched to a 2-3 zone with a 17-14 lead and 11:26 remaining in the first period. Durant's NBA-range three made it a 22-16 ballgame before Atchley's tip-in gave Texas a six-point lead. Curry's trey trimmed the margin but Abrams' calmly sank three free throws after he was fouled on a three-point attempt. Tarrell Harris' trey gave the home team a brief 31-30 lead with 6:11 remaining before James knocked down his fourth FG in five attempts. Abrams' three-ball from the right wing made it a 34-30 contest. Harris' second trey knotted the affair at 34 with 3:43 left until the break. Barnes leaned heavily on his bench as the cowboys took a 38-36 lead into the locker room.
Augustin almost single-handedly launched a 9-0 Texas run to open the second period. He followed his lay-up with a pair of free throws to regain the Longhorn lead. He added another driving lay-up before coming up with a steal, leading to a Longhorn trey. It gave the Horns a quick 45-38 lead and the Cowboys called for timeout 1:42 into the frame.
But the lid came off the arena with an OSU bucket courtesy of the most improbable three-point bucket you'll see all season. Sophomore G Byron Eaton chased down a loose ball and, just before the shot clock expired, flung a prayer toward the bucket from at least 35 feet out while sailing out of bounds. Swish.
It ignited a 7-0 run to tie the game at 45. Junior F Marcus Dove, assigned to primarily defend Duant, was whistled for his fourth foul with 13:54 remaining. Durant's foul shots put Texas up by two. Augustin took a seat after he was whistled for his third personal as the game neared the midway mark of the final frame. He checked back in after the Cowboys jumped to a 57-51 lead following an 8-2 run. After Abrams sank a pair of freebies, Augustin was quickly whistled for his fourth with 7:48 left and the Horns went back to a 2-3 zone.
Dove fouled out with 6:38 while Abram's trey trimmed the OSU lead, 57-36. Curry's three-ball gave the Cowboys a 62-56 cushion. Eaton's slashing lay-up made it 64-59, but fouled out with 2:20 left. Mason's traditional three-point play pulled Texas within one at 64-63. Boggan's slam put OSU up, 70-65, before Durant's trey made it a one-possession game. Curry misfired on the back-end of a one-and-one to give Texas a chance. Augustin's fade-away jumper with 13 seconds remaining in regulation sent this one into the OT.
The rematch is slated for Monday, February 12 at the Erwin Center. Until then, Texas will try to bounce back at Villanova at 1 p.m. (CST) Saturday. The game is scheduled for a CBS-Sports telecast.