Feb 11, 2024

🏀 MBB: K-State’s rally comes up short at BYU

Posted Feb 11, 2024 9:19 AM
MBB K-State vs BYU
MBB K-State vs BYU

PROVO, Utah – Kansas State used a 16-2 run to close to within a single possession with just over a minute to play, but No. 21/19 BYU was able to hold on in the final seconds to post a 72-66 win on Saturday night before a crowd of 17,446 fans at the Marriott Center. 

Junior Arthur Kaluma, who scored 13 of his game-high 18 points in the second half, gave K-State (15-9, 5-6 Big 12) the opportunity at the comeback, as his 3-pointer closed the deficit to 66-64 with 1:11 remaining and forcing a BYU timeout. However, out of the timeout, the nation's best 3-point shooting team answered back with 51 seconds left as the Cougars' leading scorer Jaxson Robinson connected on his second triple of the game to push the lead out to 69-66.

Kaluma's reverse layup with 32 seconds left gave the Wildcats' one last chance at 69-66, but the Cougars were able to get a layup from senior Spencer Johnson with the shot clock running out for a 71-66 lead with 13 seconds remaining. Senior Tylor Perry's jumper with 9 seconds missed and Johnson got the rebound and made 1-of-2 from the free throw line for the final margin of victory.

Kaluma, who hit on 7-of-13 from the field and 3-of-5 from 3-point range, was joined in double figures by fellow junior Cam Carter, who scored 14 points to go with 6 rebounds and 2 assists in 37 minutes. Kaluma had a near double-double with 8 rebounds and 2 assists in 35 minutes. The bench gave the Wildcats a boost, as senior Will McNair Jr. collected a season-best 10 rebounds to go with 7 points, 2 assists and 2 blocks, while fellow David N'Guessan chipped in 9 points, 7 rebounds and 2 blocks.

BYU (17-6, 5-5 Big 12) saw five players score in double figures led by junior Fousseyni Traore's 14 points.

Down by as many as 17 points midway through the second half, K-State was able to slowly chip away at the deficit, as the Wildcats scored 23 of 31 points in a more than 7-minute stretch behind the play of Kaluma, who had 11 of his 13 second-half points during this span. Trailing 64-48 with just under 6 minutes to play, the Wildcats rattled off 11 straight points, all from 5 different players, to close the gap to 64-59 and force a timeout by head coach Mark Pope with 3:35 remaining.

BYU, which made just 10 of 21 attempts from the free throw line, kept the comeback alive by going 2-of-4 from the stripe on back-to-back opportunities, as Perry made 2 free throws followed by Kaluma's 3-pointer that closed the deficit to 66-64 with 1:11 to play.  

The Cougars seized control of the game in the first half behind a 16-8 run that broke a 14-all tie and resulted in a 9-point lead (36-27) at the break.

K-State finished the night at 43.1 percent (25-of-58) shooting from the field, scoring 36 of its 66 points in the paint, and made 10 of 12 attempts from the free throw line. The Wildcats struggled from 3-point range, making just 26.1 percent (6-of-23) of its attempts, including a combined 1-of-14 from Carter and Perry. The team outrebounded the Cougars, 42-34, including 34 defensive boards.

The loss continued the Wildcats' frustration on the road with their fifth straight setback.BYU connected on 42.9 percent (27-of-63) from the field, including 32 percent (8-of-25) from 3-point range, but made just 10 of 21 attempts from the line. The Cougars scored nearly half their points in the paint (34), while they scored 14 points off 16 Wildcat turnovers.

Traore was joined in double figures by Robinson and Johnson who each added 12 points, while senior Noah Waterman and junior Trevin Knell scored 11 and 10 points, respectively.

This was just the eighth meeting between the schools and the first as Big 12 members. It was the first matchup at the Marriott Center since the schools opened the building on Dec. 3, 1971.  


On the game…"This is my second time here. The last time I was here it came down to a block at the buzzer. (Baylor's) Pierre Jackson blocked a 3-pointer by Brandon Davies in front of an incredible environment. And once again, the environment didn't fail to live up to the great reputation that it has. Coach (Mark) Pope does a great job with their guys. And at the end of the day, they made one or two more plays than we did."  


  1. K-State (15-9, 5-6 Big 12) nearly overcame a 17-point second-half deficit, closing to within a possession with just over a minute to play, but No. 21/19 BYU held on for a 72-66 win.
  2. K-State is now 2-5 on the road this season, including 1-5 in Big 12 play… The Wildcats have now lost 5 in a row on the road (at Texas Tech, Iowa State, Houston, Oklahoma State, BYU).
  3. The series between K-State and BYU is now tied at 4-all, in this, the first meeting as conference foes and the first overall since the 2010 NCAA Tournament… It was the first matchup between the schools at the Marriott Center since they opened the building on Dec. 3, 1971.
  4. K-State scored its 66 points on 43.1 percent (25-of-58) shooting, including 26.1 percent (6-of-23) from 3-point range, and 83.3 percent (10-of-12) from the free throw line.
  5. K-State won the rebounding battle, 42-34, for the 15th time in 24 games this season… The Wildcats collected 40 or more rebounds for the ninth time this season.
  6. K-State held the nation's top 3-point shooting team to 8 triples on 32 percent shooting.
  7. K-State's 16 turnovers led to 14 BYU points.
  8. K-State used a starting lineup of senior Tylor Perry, freshman Dai Dai Ames, junior Cam Carter, junior Arthur Kaluma and redshirt sophomore Jerrell Colbert… It marked the third straight game using this lineup and just the fifth different lineup this season… Carter has now started all 60 games in his K-State career… Carter and Perry have started all 24 games… Kaluma earned his 22nd start… It was the sixth start for Ames and the third career start for Colbert.


  1. Two Wildcats scored in double figures, including a game-high 18 points from junior Arthur Kaluma… He was joined by junior Cam Carter (14 points).
  2. Kaluma scored his 18 points on 7-of-13 field goals, including 3-of-5 from 3-point range, to go with 8 rebounds, 2 assists and a steal in 35 minutes… He has now scored in double figures in 60 career games, including 20 this season.
  3. Kaluma has now led the team in scoring on 6 occasions.
  4. Carter scored his 14 points on 6-of-16 shooting to go with 6 rebounds and 2 assists in 37 minutes… He has now scored in double figures in a team-best 21 games.
  5. Senior Will McNair Jr. grabbed a game-high and season-best 10 rebounds to go with 7 points, 2 assists and 2 blocks in 27 minutes off the bench… It marked the third time registering double-digit rebounds, including the first time at K-State.
  6. Seniors David N'Guessan and Tylor Perry each had 9 points, while N'Guessan added 7 rebounds and 2 blocks in 24 minutes off the bench.