Friday’s Sweet 16 battle between the No. 3 Kansas State Wildcats and No. 7 Michigan State Spartans ended up being an instant classic, one where the Wildcats survived in a 98-93 overtime thriller. K-State has now advanced to the Elite 8 on Saturday, where it will await the winner of No. 5 Tennessee and No. 9 Florida Atlantic.
Kansas State point guard Markquis Nowell set an NCAA Tournament game record with 19 assists and came through with the game-sealing steal and layup at the end of OT.
Markquis Nowell caps off his incredible game with the steal and Bucket to advance pic.twitter.com/CkRZzqyMlr— Alex (@Dubs408) March 24, 2023
This was a fun, competitive battle for the entire eventing as the two opponents went back and forth from the opening tip. A Cam Carter three at the end of the first half would give Kansas State a 43-39 lead heading into the half.
The Wildcats were able to take an eight-point lead coming out of the half, but got a scare when star guard Markquis Nowell sustained an ankle injury. With Nowell briefly out, the Spartans were able to storm back and re-tie the contest. Nowell would come back in and continue to hook his K-State teammates up on offense with assists.
Trailing by two in the final minute of regulation, Spartans guard Tyson Walker stepped up with a clutch layup to tie the game at 82 with six seconds left. Nowell would miss his layup at the other end, triggering overtime.
The back-and-forth action continued into OT and the two teams were tied at 92 with less than a minute left. That’s when Nowell tied the NCAA Tournament assist record with a sick alley-oop to Keyontae Johnson.
MARKQUIS NOWELL TIES THE NCAA RECORD 18 ASSISTS ON THIS FEED TO KEYONTAE JOHNSON @KStateMBB pic.twitter.com/R3V53W8wmO— CBS Sports College Basketball (@CBSSportsCBB) March 24, 2023
Up one with 15 seconds left, Nowell would get the record when setting up Ismael Massoud for a jumper off an inbounds pass to put the team up by three. It was after that when the K-State point guard would call game on defense, sending the Cats to the next round and the Spartans home.