LUBBOCK, Texas (AP) — Davide Moretti scored 18 points, including a 3-pointer right after Cartier Diarra missed an easy breakaway dunk that would have tied the score midway through the second half, and Texas Tech beat Kansas State 69-62 on Wednesday night.
Moretti’s 3 for a five-point lead came after a pass he wasn’t expecting bounced off his back to Diarra, who had a clear path to the basket but tried a windmill slam that clanged off the back of the rim.
Freshman Jahmi’us Ramsey had 17 points to help the Red Raiders (17-9, 8-5 Big 12) keep sole possession of third place in the conference, a game ahead of No. 17 West Virginia.
Kyler Edwards scored 14 points as Texas Tech bounced back from a loss to Oklahoma State that ended a three-game winning streak and knocked them out of the Top 25 after just one week back in the poll.
Xavier Sneed had 15 points for the last-place Wildcats (9-17, 2-11), whose six-game losing streak is their longest since 2005, a season after tying Texas Tech for the Big 12 regular-season championship.
Moretti finished 4 of 10 from long range and tied Edwards and Ramsey for the team lead with four assists. Edwards, who had a career-high 24 points in a win at Kansas State in January, was 5 of 9 from the field.
Antonio Gordon hit a pair of 3s just 10 seconds apart as the Wildcats trimmed a 13-point deficit with 1:37 remaining to five with 38 seconds to go. But Kansas State couldn’t get any closer. Gordon scored 14 points, and Diarra had 10.
Kansas State: Diarra’s ill-fated dunk attempt came right after his nifty reverse layup had pulled the Wildcats within two. It was a symbolic moment for a team headed for a losing record after three straight 20-win seasons under coach Bruce Weber. Kansas State is headed for its worst record in 20 years.
Texas Tech: The Red Raiders have been difficult to figure out coming off the best season in school history, which ended with a loss to Virginia in overtime in the national championship game. They’ll be favored in the next three games before finishing the regular season against the Big 12′s two best teams: top-ranked Baylor on the road and No. 3 Kansas at home.
Kansas State hosts Texas and Texas Tech visits Iowa State on Saturday.