Texas A&M holds off Kansas StateJan 7, 2007 - 8:28 AM COLLEGE STATION, Texas (Ticker) -- Acie Law IV got a second chance and made the best of it.
Law hit a pair of free throws with 6.5 seconds to play to help No. 11 Texas A&M survive an upset bid by Kansas State with a 69-65 victory in the Big 12 Conference opener for both teams.
In winning its sixth consecutive game, the Aggies (13-2, 1-0 Big 12) improved to 12-0 on their home floor, but not without a major scare from the Wildcats.
"That was an awfully good win," A&M coach Billy Gillispie said. "It wasn't pretty but anytime you win in the Big 12 it's big. We didn't play our best but sometimes you just have to be thankful to win those."
Law, a senior guard and A&M's best free-throw shooter at 87 percent, had a chance to wrap the game up, but missed a pair at the line with 22 seconds left and a 66-63 lead.
After Akeem Wright scored on a driving layup to slice the deficit to a point with seven seconds left, he immediately fouled Law on the inbounds play.
This time Law buried both foul shots, and a home run pass by the Wildcats (10-5, 0-1) was intercepted by Aggies center Joseph Jones.
"I just wanted to knock them down," Law said of his decisive foul shots. "I should have made the first two, but Coach and everyone told me to forget about them. The second time I made sure to go get the ball so I could redeem myself.
"It's always good to get a win in the Big 12, every game is a battle. You always want to win at home because any road game is very difficult.
Law scored 18 points and Jones added 17 for the Aggies, who were 22-of-26 from the stripe. Josh Carter added 11 points, including a four-point momentum-changing play that tied it at 55 with just under 7 1/2 minutes to play.
"Josh made a nice drive and basket and his four-point play was huge," Gillispie said. "We were kind of sinking and that was really big for us."
Wright scored a season-high 18 points for Kansas State, which lost star freshman Bill Walker to a leg injury with 15:18 left to play in the first half.
Still, the Wildcats played superbly on defense, limiting the Aggies to 43 percent (21-of-49) shooting and forcing 16 turnovers, although they were outrebounded, 37-26.
"Texas A&M was very physical, they were the most physical post guys that I have played in a long time," Kansas State coach Bob Huggins said. "They made a lot of big plays as a team and that's why they are the No. 11 team in the nation. If we made plays like that we may be No. 11 in the nation."
- NCAA BB
FINAL 1ST 2ND TOTAL
--- --- -----
KANSAS ST 30 35 65
TEXAS A&M (11) 32 37 69 FINAL
Jan 6 10:16 PM
- NCAA BB
KANSAS ST 30
TEXAS A&M (11) 32 HALFTIME
Jan 6 8:56 PM
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