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Notebook: Cowboys lose physical game against Baylor

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Moussa Cisse

OSU forward Moussa Cisse (center) suffered an undisclosed injury late in the second half. 

It took five extra minutes to decide OSU's game against No. 10 Baylor. 

After 45 minutes of physical play, the Bears defeated the Cowboys 66-64 at Gallagher-Iba Arena on Monday.

Physicality until the end

When a missed shot clanked off the rim, flew into the air and began to fall down, all 10 bodies on the court dove.

Loose balls were being fought for, hard fouls were taken and players were getting hurt.

OSU forward Moussa Cisse landed hard on the court after diving for a loose ball and was helped to the sideline by trainers with an undisclosed upper-body injury. Four minutes later, Cisse returned with four minutes remaining in regulation. Coach Mike Boynton said he was proud of Cisse’s growth and toughness.

“He is a competitor,” Boynton said. “It shows character and that he cares. When you have that care, talent and work ethic, he’ll get to where he wants to be.”

The officials for Monday’s game allowed the players to keep playing and rarely blew whistles. Starting guard Isaac Likekele, who played through 35 minutes, enjoyed the sparse calls.

“I love these kinds of games,” Likekele said. “It’s all fun, as a player and a team you don’t want it to come down to little calls like that.”

Losing his footing

Starting guard Bryce Thompson scored 11 points in the first half, while also shooting 80% from the field and 2 for 2 from behind the arc.

The second half was a vast change. Thompson scored four points on 1 of 7 shooting and failed to connect on a 3-point shot.

“I was able to get a rhythm early but struggled late,” Thompson said. “It comes with it. I put a lot of time in and I have confidence in every shot I shoot.”

Five more minutes

After the clock struck zero, OSU and Baylor each scored 60 points.

It sent the teams to an overtime period. Monday’s game was OSU’s third overtime game this season, and fifth game which was decided by three or less points.

“It speaks for our team,” Thompson said. “We’re not going to go away, no matter what the circumstances are. We are going to come out and give it all to this city and our fans. They are still supporting us, so it’s only right we go out there and give it our all.”

Boynton was not disappointed his team could not close the game in regulation — his reaction was the opposite.

“When we got to overtime I said, ‘Hey we get to play more basketball,’” Boynton said. “Even if it’s just five more minutes. It’s a really competitive league, I feel like we have played more overtime games. These kids have not given up on our program.”

sports.ed@ocolly.com