- Associated Press - Saturday, February 6, 2016

STILLWATER, Okla. (AP) - Iowa State almost let a 13-point second half lead slip away on Saturday, but some defensive adjustments and clutch shooting made the difference against Oklahoma State.

Georges Niang scored 16 of his 18 points in the second half and had nine rebounds to help lead the No. 13 Cyclones to a 64-59 victory over the Cowboys.

Niang made 7 of 10 shots and grabbed all of his rebounds after halftime. Monte Morris and Matt Thomas each scored 16 points for the Cyclones (17-6, 6-4 Big 12).

Niang and Thomas both scored six points over the final five minutes. Morris sank two free throws with 13.5 seconds remaining to clinch it.

“I think it’s his competitive nature, and obviously play-calling, to put us in the right position,” Niang said of teammate Morris. “We needed to go get a bucket, our numbers get called, and we have to get a bucket.”

Jeffrey Carroll scored a career-high 18 points and added seven rebounds for Oklahoma State (11-12, 2-8), which lost for the fourth time in five games and eighth in 10.

“We got down 10 or 11 and we came back and took the lead again, so I’m proud of the effort,” said Cowboys coach Travis Ford. “I thought they really competed, we just didn’t have enough against a top-15 team in the country. Right now, with the situation we’re in, it’s hard to beat a team like that.”

Iowa State led 48-35 with 9:59 remaining, but Oklahoma State went up 55-54 on Tavarius Shine’s 3-pointer with 3:22 left.

After the Cyclones regained the lead, Carroll’s 3 with 1:42 to play tied it at 58-58, but Niang scored on a layup with 1:13 left to make it 60-58.

OSU’s Mitchell Solomon connected on 1 of 2 free throws with 50 seconds left to make it a one-point game, but Niang answered with a layup with 34 seconds to go before Morris sank two free throws.

“I think it was just adjusting,” Morris said. “We talked big about spacing at halftime and that was a big emphasis that we put in after halftime. We came out and were able to get the job done.”

Each team was missing a key contributor. Iowa State senior forward Jameel McKay sat out the game after he was suspended indefinitely by the team for violating team rules. Junior Deonte Burton made his first start of the season for McKay and scored 11 points and added four steals.

McKay was averaging 12.4 points and 9.0 rebounds a game, with 10 offensive rebounds in his last two games.

For Oklahoma State, freshman point guard Jawun Evans didn’t play because of a shoulder injury he aggravated in the Cowboys’ 63-61 overtime loss at Texas Tech on Wednesday. Evans, who averages 12.9 points, 4.4 rebounds and 4.9 assists, is considered day-to-day.

Oklahoma State led 27-24 early in the second half when Iowa State used a 10-2 run over the next five minutes to go up 34-29 on Thomas’ 3-pointer with 14:44 remaining. That marked the Cyclones’ biggest lead to that point.

The Cowboys got within 36-33 on Tyree Griffin’s long jumper with 13:22 left, but Iowa State reeled off a 12-3 run to establish a 13-point advantage when Thomas sank two free throws with 9:59 to go.

Oklahoma State responded with an 11-1 run, pulling within 49-46 on Carroll’s 3-pointer from the right corner with 7:10 remaining.

TIP INS

Iowa State: Entering the game shooting 37.0 percent from 3-point range, the Cyclones connected on 10 of 18 from beyond the arc. Matt Thomas shot 4 for 6 on 3s, giving him a 3-point shooting percentage of 57.1 (16 for 28) over his past four contests.

Oklahoma State: Each of the Cowboys’ last three losses, including a 63-61 OT defeat at Texas Tech on Wednesday and a 69-65 loss to No. 15 Baylor on Jan. 27, have been by fewer than five points.

QUOTE OF THE NIGHT

“It’s a little frustrating, but we’re learning from it. We’ll never stay down about it because Coach Ford always preaches ‘on to the next play,’ because we can’t do anything about it now,” Oklahoma State sophomore guard Jeffrey Carroll of dealing with all the close losses.

STAT LINES

Iowa State has now won the last six meetings between the teams, with a total of just 17 points deciding the last five. . Morris entered the game ranking second in the Big 12 with 7.0 assists per game, and he finished with eight. He also leads the Conference with a 2.0 average in steals, and he matched that total. .For Oklahoma State, Leyton Hammonds scored 12 points in the first half on 5 of 10 shooting, but he took just two shots in the second half, 3-pointers, and missed both.

UP NEXT

Iowa State: On the road Wednesday at Texas Tech.

Oklahoma State: On the road Monday at TCU.

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