Pittsburgh
Oklahoma State
89 - 95 Final - 2OT
  for this game

Boggans helps Oklahoma St. outlast Pitt

Dec 22, 2006 - 7:04 AM OKLAHOMA CITY, Oklahoma (Ticker) -- Mario Boggan refused to let Oklahoma State lose another heartbreaker.

Boggan converted an offensive rebound late in double overtime and scored a career-high 30 points as No. 14 Oklahoma State avoided a second straight defeat with a 95-89 victory over seventh-ranked Pittsburgh.

A surprising entry in the national rankings, the Cowboys (12-1) had their undefeated season ended in crushing fashion, when Dane Bradshaw's follow shot with 1.9 seconds left sealed Tennessee's 79-77 upset on Monday.

"We didn't play well vs. Tennessee so we had to come back and prepare hard for this game," Boggan said. "Coach talked about rebounding and playing hard so that was our focus tonight. We knew it would be a war and we were prepared."

After both JamesOn Curry and Boggan were off the mark on shots in the closing seconds of regulation and the first overtime, respectively, Oklahoma State took the lead for good after Boggan converted two free throws for an 88-87 edge with 1:42 left.

The Panthers failed to answer back with a 3-pointer and Byron Eaton missed a long jumper for the Cowboys, but Boggan out-maneuvered Pittsburgh 7-footer Aaron Gray for the rebound and hit a jump hook for a 90-87 advantage with 38 seconds to play.

Although Boggan was forced to leave the game with an apparent left wrist injury and the Panthers' Mike Cook sank two free throws with 23 seconds to play, the Cowboys got a break when Antonio Graves pulled down Eaton by the neck during a full-court press.

Ruled an intentional foul, Eaton made both free throws for a 92-89 advantage.

"I know they were trying to foul and he pulled me down," Eaton said. "I acted a bit, but I knew two free throws would put us up and I had to hit them."

"Obviously, we didn't want an intentional foul. You just have to play through it," Pittsburgh coach Jamie Dixon said. "I don't know who made the ball but it's the call."

Curry added two more foul shots moments later to seal the victory for Oklahoma State, which improved to 2-0 against ranked teams this season.

"I was telling some guys, that's one of the best games I've ever been apart of," Oklahoma State coach Sean Sutton said. "One of the best non-conference wins we've had in a long time. Both teams played at a high level. This was an extremely competitive game."

Boggan finished 9-of-19 from the field, 12-of-14 on free throws and grabbed nine rebounds.

"We knew he was good but he (has) improved in two years," Dixon said of Boggan. "He got to the line 14 times and, to his credit, knocked down the free throws."

Curry scored 20 points and Kenny Cooper and Terrel Harris added 12 apiece for the Cowboys, who played with just seven players after they lost freshman guard Obi Muonelo with a left leg injury prior to the Tennessee game.

Oklahoma State also absorbed its lumps in the game with Boggan unavailable for the last crucial seconds with the wrist injury and Eaton pulling his groin.

"I was afraid of fatigue, but we just kept talking about how big the game was and how it was a defining moment of our season, and they just kept battling and came up with enough plays to win," Sutton said.

The Cowboys' leading scorer and rebounder, Boggan believes that his injury will not sideline him long.

"My wrist hurts, but I'll be alright for practice and our next game," he said. "I think it got pushed back three of four times and caught in people's jersey, but I'll be all right."

The preseason Big East Player of the Year, Gray had 24 points and 10 rebounds for his seventh double-double of the season for Pittsburgh (10-2), which dropped its second straight game, both to ranked opponents on the road.

The team also had a tough road win at Buffalo because its current slide.

"There's not another school that's played three straight road games in front of hostile environments," Dixon said. "We should move up the RPI (Ratings Percentage Index) because nobody else is doing what we are by playing on the road against very good teams."

Facing another strong team in the road, the Panthers found themselves in a rough situation in the closing moments of regulation, trailing, 75-71, with 45 seconds left after a layup by Boggan.

Sam Young missed a 3-pointer but Pittsburgh got the ball back after it was batted out of bounds. Cook was fouled with 38 seconds to play and made the first of two free throws. Gray rebounded the second and found Levance Fields on the right wing for a tying 3-pointer three seconds later.

Curry had a chance for the win, but Graves blocked his pull-up jumper in the lane and Boggan could not get a shot to fall after grabbing the loose ball.

In the first overtime, Boggan made two free throws for a 81-80 edge with 1:19 remaining. Gray re-tied the score by splitting a pair from the stripe and Boggan missed a 3-pointer in the closing seconds to set up the second extra session.