Eric Davis Jr.

Photo Credit: Angela Wang | Daily Texan Staff

Not the first, not the second, but the third time’s the charm.

Trailing Texas by just one point with 23 ticks on the clock, Oklahoma State’s Jeffrey Carroll drove to the basket for a right-handed layup. The shot swirled out of the rim and landed in the hands of the Cowboys’ Tavarius Shine after he relentlessly pursued the ball.

Oklahoma State’s second opportunity at a game-winning shot bricked off the iron, but Yankuba Sima flew in from the 3-point line and tipped the ball in with eight seconds left before either team could come down with a key rebound.

It took three chances for Oklahoma State to sink the game-winning bucket, but the Cowboys’ intense finish gave them a 65-64 win over the Longhorns in Stillwater on Saturday afternoon.

Despite the closely contested final minute, the Longhorns held a safe lead that was quickly diminished in the last few minutes.

With 5:55 remaining, freshman guard Matt Coleman’s free throw put Texas ahead 62-50. But with the home crowd at Gallagher-Iba Arena on their side, the Cowboys drained a slew of free throws and shot lights out on their jumpers to pull ahead, using a 13-0 run in less than three minutes of clock time.

Junior forward Dylan Osetkowski drained Texas’ last field goal of the game on a driving bankshot down the right side of the court. But the Longhorns hit another shot. Unfortunately for Shaka Smart’s team, it didn’t count.

With under 30 seconds to go and a one-point lead, Coleman fired down the lane and shot one of his signature floaters — a move he previously hit a game-winning shot with against Tennessee State. But Oklahoma State clogged the lane with several stationary defenders, one of which positioned himself right in front of Coleman.

The referees issued a charging foul. Instead of a three-point lead, Texas turned the ball over to the Cowboys for an opportunity at the final shot.

Oklahoma State struck gold on Sima’s tip-in. Texas had under eight seconds to respond with a game-winner, but Oklahoma State poked the ball out of Coleman’s hands and the Longhorns’ final shot was reduced to an off-balance, desperation heave from beyond the arc by sophomore guard Jacob Young. The buzzer sounded as the attempt bounced off the rim.

Before that final sequence, Texas played solid defense on the Cowboys’ prior attempts at a game-winner. One of Sima’s previous layups ended in a rejection by Wooden Award watch list member and freshman center Mo Bamba. After being shut down in the opening 20 minutes, Bamba played like a man possessed in the second half. His 11 second-half points, complemented by 10 rebounds and two blocks, propelled Texas throughout the afternoon. But the team still couldn’t escape with a much-needed conference win.

Prior to Bamba’s offensive arrival, the hero of the game was Eric Davis Jr. The junior guard finished the opening half with 15 of his 18 points. He drained 4-of-5 3-pointers and sparked the Longhorns’ offense — a significant reason Texas entered halftime ahead 32-25.

Bamba and Davis played stout individual games, but Texas’ tight rotation — which featured just seven players — ultimately hurt the team down the stretch in the second half. The Longhorns were without sophomore guard Andrew Jones, who was recently diagnosed with leukemia, and junior guard Kerwin Roach II, who is out with a fractured left hand.

For a team that appears to be on the fringe of a NCAA Tournament selection, Texas (11–6, 2–3 Big 12) needs every win it can get, and a road loss to Oklahoma State certainly won’t help when almost every Big 12 matchup is a tough battle. Smart and the Longhorns will return home on Wednesday night against No. 8 Texas Tech.

Photo Credit: Katie Bauer | Daily Texan Staff

Junior forward Dylan Osetkowski set his feet and buried a 3-pointer with 30 seconds remaining in overtime, helping Texas rally past Iowa State at the Hilton Coliseum in Ames, Iowa, on Monday night, 74-70, for its first conference road win since 2016.

After surrendering 17 threes in the loss to Kansas on Friday, Texas responded by holding Iowa State to only seven of its 27 attempts from behind the arc.

Two days after freshman forward Mo Bamba exploded scoring 11 of the Longhorns’ first 13 points against the Jayhawks, Osetkowski poured in eight of Texas' first 10 points against Iowa State — part of a career-high 25 points to go along with the junior forward's nine rebounds.

“Coach in practice has been adamant with me to shoot the ball, regardless of whether it is going in or not,” Osetkowski said. “They believe in me and I just need to have confidence. And going into this game my confidence was through the roof.”

Head coach Shaka Smart took full advantage of the Texas bench, subbing regularly to keep the pace in the Longhorns’ favor. Iowa State’s lack of depth forced the team to lean heavily on its starting rotation.

Texas also showed a full court press for much of the second half and overtime, negating the energy from the crowd of more than 14,000, limiting the Cyclones’ explosiveness down the stretch.

“We knew it would be a very similar environment to VCU,” Osetkowski said. “Great crowd. We knew Iowa State would be fighting the whole night. But those are the games you come to Texas for. This is Big 12 play, and it's what we love to do.”

The Longhorns kept the pace through the opening 20 minutes, propelled by 14 first-half points from Osetkowski. The two teams entered the locker room tied at 31.

But just as Kansas found separation early in the second half on Friday, the Cyclones seemed poised to run away with it coming out of the break. A quick six-point run gave Iowa State a five-point lead, prompting a Texas timeout with 15 minutes to play.

With the growing threat of starting conference play 0–2, the Longhorns found an unlikely hero in junior guard Eric Davis Jr. After creating consecutive and-one possessions to narrow the lead, Davis hit a 3-pointer with under two minutes left to give Texas a one-point advantage. All 15 of Davis’ points came in the second half as the Longhorns rallied to forced overtime.

From there an Osetkowski three and pair of free throws from freshman guard Matt Coleman made it a two-possession game with under two minutes to play. Texas was able to close out the contest and move to 10-4 overall and 1–1 in conference play.

“Whether it was run the clock or get a great shot instead of a good shot, we just wanted to finish the game strong,” Osetkowski said. “And we did that.”

The Longhorns continue their road trip with a matchup against No. 18 Baylor on Saturday in Waco.