November 19, 2007

Pokes survive in Maui

Two minutes into the second half and it was looking like Oklahoma State was on cruise control.

After a first half which saw the Cowboys gallop out to a 42-24 lead, the lead was extended to 21 and it was looking like OSU had sowed up an easy win in the first round of the EA Sports Maui Invitational.

Then Louisiana State woke up and fought the Cowboys hard the rest of the way. The 47-26 lead melted away as the Tigers outscored the Pokes 51-36 over the last 18 minutes of the game. The strong second half wasn't enough to overcome OSU's strong first half, however, as the Cowboys defeated the Tigers 83-77.

Two key moments late likely kept LSU (2-1) from being able to overcome the large deficit. Ibrahima Thomas scored a blocked shot and passed the ball to Byron Eaton, who ran coast-to-coast for a layup, but missed. Thomas followed him and was able to nab a rebound and sink a basket plus get fouled in the process. That put the Cowboys up by six.

Key moment two game after a Chris Johnson three-pointer made the score 80-77 in favor of OSU. Terrel Harris picked up a rebound off a missed three and was along a sideline with two Tigers double-teaming him when the Pokes called a timeout. The only problem, however, was the timeout was called after Harris had the ball batted away from him. But the referees had already granted the timeout. That sequence took place with 18.5 seconds left in the game. On the ensuing play, Harris was fouled and sank both attempts, effectively locking up the win for the Pokes (2-1).

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