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McGruder's Buzzer Beater Gives K-State 64-61 Win


GO WILDCATS Senior Rodney McGruder led three Wildcats in double figures with a game-high 18 points to go with four assists and three steals in 39 minutes of action.
GO WILDCATS
Senior Rodney McGruder led three Wildcats in double figures with a game-high 18 points to go with four assists and three steals in 39 minutes of action.
GO WILDCATS

March 2, 2013

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WACO, Texas (AP) -- Rodney McGruder and 13th-ranked Kansas State took full advantage of an extra last-second chance to maintain a share of the Big 12 lead.

McGruder hit a 3-pointer at the buzzer, after the Wildcats got the ball back following Baylor's failed desperation inbound pass, for a 64-61 victory Saturday night.

The Bears had the ball back with 1 second left after K-State's Shane Southwell missed badly on a shot that went out of bounds.

Instead of settling for overtime, the Bears brought seldom-used Jacob Neubert off the bench to try a length-of-the-court inbound pass.

But Neubert's baseball-style pass went out of bounds without being touched. So the Wildcats got the ball under their own basket with still a second on the clock.

Kansas State (24-5, 13-3 Big 12) used a timeout and called a play called quick.

And it worked, with Angel Rodriguez inbounding to McGruder on the right wing for the game-ending shot.

McGruder had 18 points to lead Kansas State, which won its fifth straight to maintain a share of the Big 12 lead with sixth-ranked Kansas with two regular season games left. The Jayhawks got their 13th league victory earlier Saturday, 91-65 over West Virginia.

Rodriguez had 13 points, with a late go-ahead 3-pointer, and Martavious Irving 11 for the Wildcats.

Pierre Jackson had 18 points and seven assists for Baylor (17-12, 8-8), which has lost seven of its past 10 games. Cory Jefferson had 14 points while Isaiah Austin, the Bears' 7-foot-1 freshman standout, had 11 points and 12 rebounds for his 10th double-double this season.

Baylor had its first lead in the second half when Jefferson got a bounce pass from Brady Heslip and made a layup while being fouled by Southwell.

After the media timeout that immediately followed with 3:58 left, Jefferson made the free throw to put the Bears up 56-54.

Southwell then had a shot blocked by Austin, but the ball went out of bounds, and Rodriguez hit a 3-pointer to put the Wildcats back ahead.

Then Jackson missed a layup that was rebounded by Jordan Henriquez, who had a dunk at the other end with 2:48 left for a 59-56 lead.

Rodriguez had a bad pass that Jackson came up with, before driving, being fouled and making the second free throw. Jackson had another chance after a miss by Rodriguez, driving all the way and being fouled McGruder. Those two free throws tied the game at 59 with 1:23 left.

McGruder made a jumper with 1:03 left, but Jackson was fouled again on a drive and again made both free throws with 35 seconds left.

Kansas State brought the ball up the court and made a few passes before coach Bruce Weber called timeout with 7.7 seconds left, setting up the play that led to Southwell's miss.

The Wildcats, who have won nine of their past 10 games, have regular-season games left at home against TCU and at Oklahoma State. They are 9-0 against teams from Texas, including a 20-point win at home over Baylor two weeks earlier.

Baylor played a ranked team at home for the first time this season. The Bears play Monday night at Texas and come home next Saturday for a regular-season finale against Kansas.

Down 34-33 at the half, Kansas State opened the second half with a quick 7-0 spurt, and led until Jefferson's three-point play.

Southwell made a half-opening jumper before McGruder followed with a floater. After a bad pass from Baylor's A.J. Walton, directly to Rodriguez, McGrunder had a dunk while being fouled and added the free throw for a 40-34 lead only 91 seconds into the second half.

Baylor wore its special neon yellow uniforms unveiled earlier this week by Adidas, including camouflage-patterned shorts in the same bright color. The Bears were one of six teams to get special uniforms for anticipated tournament appearances.

On top of that Saturday, Baylor gave out 10,000 T-shirts to the fans in the highlighter color, brightening up the Ferrell Center.

Until the gloomy finish.