One of the hottest teams in college basketball pulls out their fifth-straight road win and wins in nine out of the past 10 games. The storyline hasn’t changed because Brad Underwood and the Cowboys keep winning; after starting conference play 0-6.
The 80-68 win puts them over .500 and comes against Kansas State, which was the last team OSU lost to before going on this run. This win is the first for fifth-year senior Phil Forte in Manhattan.
The Cowboys led the final 16 minutes of the game after being down as many as 14 with about six minutes to go in the first half and rallying to go into the half down 1. The Cowboys forced six turnovers and scored 13 points from the line during the final 16 to hold the lead and grow it. Six of the 13 points at the charity stripe came from PG Jawun Evans, who shot 12 times from the free-throw line. Evans and the Cowboys needed the contributions from the line because the starters shot 35% from the field, including Evans 4 for 16 and Phil Forte’s 0 for 2.
Oklahoma State has been able to go five straight on the road because of free throws. In the past five road games, the Cowboys have shot 20 or more attempts from the foul line in four of the five games. For some teams, free throws on the road are difficult; not when the nation’s leading free throw shooter, Forte, is on your team and your team is 7th best in the nation in free throw shooting at .776%.
The Pokes biggest contributors were senior Leyton Hammonds scoring 18 and grabbing 10 rebounds for his third career double-double and freshman Brandon Averette coming off the bench for 13 points.
OSU tries to extend its winning streak to 5 at home this Saturday when Texas Tech comes into town and the Cowboys look for their third sweep of the season.