COLLEGE STATION, Texas (Ticker) -- John Lucas matched a career high with 27 points as 13th-ranked Oklahoma State posted a 91-79 Big 12 Conference victory over Texas A&M.
Behind Lucas' best performance of the season, the Cowboys won their fifth straight and avoided a letdown before big games against Iowa State and Kansas. They never led by more than 15 points but did enough to avoid a terrible loss.
Oklahoma State (16-2, 6-1 Big 12) won its eighth in row over the Aggies. The Cowboys led, 43-34, at halftime and seemed poised to put away the game.
Lucas made 7-of-10 shots and also sank 9-of-10 from the line. He recorded his 13th double-digit effort of the season and finished this one by scoring the Cowboys' final six points for the second straight game.
Oklahoma State closed out a tight first half on an 11-2 run that was capped by Lucas' 3-pointer at the buzzer. The Cowboys stretched their lead to 53-39 before the Aggies countered with an 11-2 run that sliced the lead to 55-51 with just under 13 minutes remaining.
But the Cowboys, who shot 69 percent in the second half and 59 percent (32-of-54) overall, were able to hold off the Aggies by getting big baskets from Lucas, Ivan McFarlin and Tony Allen down the stretch.
Allen scored 13 of his 21 points in the second half while McFarlin chipped in 14 to help Oklahoma State win for the 12th time in 13 games.
Playing competitive has been the story in conference play for the Aggies (7-11, 0-7). They have not trailed by more than 14 points in any league game and the loss to the Cowboys was their most decisive since a 90-58 defeat to Oakland on December 6.