Sophomore forward Dean Wade scored 25 points Saturday to help Kansas State gain better position for an NCAA Tournament bid by defeating Baylor 77-67 at Manhattan, Kan.
Although the Wildcats (21-10, 10-8 Big 12) played an unimpressive nonconference schedule, they could attain an NCAA berth based on their winning record in conference play.
Senior guard Barry Brown added 18 points and nine assists for Kansas State, which survived a couple of Baylor threats while leading the entire second half. Wade went 9 of 14 from the floor and also snagged seven rebounds.
The Wildcats had 19 assists on 26 makes while shooting 52 percent and committing just 10 turnovers.
Sophomore center Makol Mawien added 14 points for Kansas State before fouling out with 2:07 remaining.
The Bears (18-13, 8-10) did not boost their NCAA credentials in spite of a dominant performance by senior forward Nuni Omot, who scored a career-high 30 points, including 22 in the second half.
Senior forward Terry Maston added 11 points for Baylor, which fell for the third time in five games after a five-game winning streak that began at the start of February. Baylor will be the No. 6 seed in the Big 12 Tournament.
Kansas State closed the first half with a 13-2 spurt, making four straight shots at one point in that stretch, to claim a 35-25 halftime lead.
Wade got off to a hot start for the Wildcats, exceeding his season average (16.4 points) with 17 first-half points on 7-for-11 shooting. The remainder of the Kansas State squad added 18 points as the Wildcats shot 51.7 percent.
Ten first-half turnovers against the Bears hurt their offensive efficiency. Baylor was outscored 14-0 off turnovers.
Baylor senior forward Jo Lual-Acuil fell off his stool on the sideline at the first media timeout, but played 11 minutes before the break after being checked for dehydration. He finished with six points and did not score in the second half.
—Field Level Media