TOPEKA, Kan. (THE DRIVE) Barry Brown had 21 points, D.J. Johnson added 13 and Kansas State topped ninth-ranked Baylor 70-64 in the Big 12 Tournament on Thursday night, clinching not only a spot in the semifinals but most likely a spot in the NCAA Tournament.
It was the second time the sixth-seeded Wildcats (20-12) have beaten the Bears (25-7) this season, giving them precisely the kind of marquee victory that the selection committee favors.
In the second round against West Virginia, K-State was not able to hold onto their lead and lost 51-50. A foul against Esa Ahmad allowed free throws to give WVU the lead with 20 seconds left. Stokes put up an off-balanced 3-pointer that missed, and was nearly tipped in by Dean Wade, but the Cats would ultimately lose.
These performances were enough to give K-State an opportunity at the NCAA tournament. K-State is the 11 seed and will play Wake Forrest on Tuesday in the play-in game in Dayton, Ohio. The winner of K-State-Wake Forrest will play Cincinnati on Friday.