Baylor hands Smart-less Oklahoma St another loss

Published on NewsOK Modified: February 17, 2014 at 11:38 pm •  Published: February 17, 2014
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WACO, Texas (AP) — Cory Jefferson and Baylor won another game in overtime to continue a turnaround that the Bears hope will end with an NCAA tournament berth.

Oklahoma State is just waiting for something good to happen again, perhaps starting this weekend when suspended preseason All-America guard Marcus Smart returns.

Jefferson scored 25 points and the Bears overcame a buzzer-beater that forced overtime Monday night, handing the Cowboys their seventh straight loss 70-64 in the last of three games without Smart.

The Bears (17-9, 5-8 Big 12) won in overtime at home for the second time in three days. Baylor's Brady Heslip hit a tying 3-pointer at the buzzer in regulation in a double-overtime victory against Kansas State on Saturday.

"We just did two of them the other day so it was nothing new to us," said Jefferson, who also had a game-high 13 rebounds. "We had plenty of practice for it."

The Cowboys (16-10, 4-9) can finish no better than .500 in conference but will get Smart back from his three-game suspension for pushing a heckling fan late in a loss at Texas Tech. He returns Saturday at home in the rematch with the Red Raiders.

Markel Brown and Phil Brown tried to make up for Smart's absence. Brown scored 26 points and Forte, Smart's high school teammate in the Dallas area, added 20.

"We've been playing tough the last two games and Marcus is a tough guy and he's ready to get back on this court," Brown said. "He's been watching the games on TV. He's been seeing how hard we've been working. I'm sure he's wanting to come back and join us."

Isaiah Austin had 12 points and 12 rebounds for the Bears, who won for the fourth time in six games in a run that started with a win at Oklahoma State that snapped a five-game skid.

This was supposed to be a high-profile Monday matchup between a pair of teams that were 12-1 and ranked in the top 10 nationally when Big 12 play started. Instead, it was a battle for postseason survival, and played out that way.

Baylor, which trailed by 10 early in the second half, went ahead 56-55 on a dunk by Jefferson after a missed free throw by Austin and was up by three and had the ball with 3.5 seconds left.



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