Powered by 15 points from Kam Jones, including what turned into the game winning three-pointer with just 32 seconds to go and a well timed second block of the game from Oso Ighodaro, YOUR Marquette Golden Eagles are leaving Manhattan, Kansas, tonight with a 64-63 victory over Kansas State. MU is now 8-2 on the year with just one last non-conference game left to go.
This game had some wild tilts to it, and right out of the gate. Kansas State scored the first five points of the game, and then Marquette went on a 10-2 run to take a three point advantage after about eight minutes were played. Five minutes later, Kansas State got their legs back under them and took a 21-15 lead on a three-pointer from Ismael Massoud, and that six point advantage was the Wildcats’ largest margin of the first half.
That led to eight straight from MU for a 23-21 lead on a triple from Darryl Morsell, and things stayed tight from there, right up through Justin Lewis cashing a three of his own as time expired to put the Golden Eagles up 31-30 at halftime.
Marquette’s lead instantly disappeared when the second half started, like cotton candy that was suddenly sprayed by a firehose. Five straight from Massoud and a layup from Markquis Nowell had K-State up 37-31 and MU head coach Shaka Smart calling the “what did we just talk about during halftime, because I’m pretty sure it wasn’t that” timeout.
But that’s as far away as K-State got. Sure, they got there repeatedly, but Marquette let them go no further than six, with the last margin coming at the 15:59 mark on a Nowell jumper at 41-35.
MU scored six straight from there to tie it at 41 with 13:56 to go, and then Greg Elliott took over. Three-pointer, steal, layup, assist, all in the span of less than 100 seconds to help get an 8-0 run going. 52-50 Marquette.
The Golden Eagles started stacking up solid play after solid play. Kam Jones drained a big ol’ three-pointer at the 5:42 mark to make it a 61-54 ballgame and give Marquette their largest lead of the game.
But you can read, you can see that score at the top of the page. After Jones’ triple, MU didn’t score again for over five minutes. K-State just kept whittling, a bucket here, a bucket there. A layup from Mark Smith with 48 seconds to go, 61-60. Almost all of MU’s lead disappeared.
And then, with the first bucket in over five minutes, Kam Jones, again, from range. 64-60. 32 seconds left. Just play defense. Get a stop, get out of town. Nope. Mike McGuirl said “hey, I can do that too,” and he splashed a three of his own to get K-State back within one.
But the Wildcats were forced to foul since there was less than 20 seconds left, and foul a lot because they weren’t in the bonus yet. Finally, MU triggered it in to Jones, which sent him to the line with a chance to ice the game.
K-State ball, 13 seconds left. Just enough time to get any clean shot in the universe at the other end to win.
They didn’t get it.
It was a great move and play by Massoud to get the crack at the reverse layup, but Oso Ighodaro tracked him all the way from the three-point line in, and stuck out his arm to get the block with the game on the line.
Tyler Kolek wrapped up the loose ball, time expired, and the Golden Eagles were victorious.
As simple as that.
Jones led Marquette with his 15, with the last six coming in the final six minutes of the game. Justin Lewis was the only other guy in double figures, and he added 14 to go with his nine rebounds, five assists, three steals, and two blocks. That’s how you get to be KenPom MVP of the game. Tyler Kolek balanced out his absolutely awful 0-for-7 shooting behind the arc with eight rebounds and seven assists plus two steals.
Up Next: The Golden Eagles return to Fiserv Forum after two straight road games, but just because you’re at home, it doesn’t mean things are easy. It’ll be #4 UCLA Bruins in the building on Saturday afternoon, with tipoff set for 1:30pm Central time. UCLA had a game canceled on them over the weekend, so they will have had nine days off in between games.