Teammates celebrate Jonathan Holmes' winning 3-point shot against Kansas State. (Shelby Tauber / Associated Press)
Austin, Texas — Jonathan Holmes delivered the shot. Cameron Ridley provided the muscle.
Texas won again, this time 67-64 over No. 22 Kansas State and the Longhorns keep climbing upward in the Big 12.
Holmes made a catch-and-shoot 3-pointer from the corner as time expired Tuesday night, sending Texas to its fourth straight league victory and second in a row over a ranked team.
“I just caught it and shot it,” Holmes said, adding he had no time to think before putting the ball in the air.
The Longhorns (15-4, 4-2) are giving the Big 12 plenty to think about.
A team that started with no expectations after a losing season in 2012-13, the program’s first in 15 years, is now feeling like it can chase the league heavyweights over a long season.
And maybe even challenge for the title.
“That’s what we’re playing for,” Holmes said.
Ridley scored 18 points in a game-long tug-of-war under the basket with Kansas State’s Thomas Gipson, who scored 24 points.
Javan Felix had 23 points for the Longhorns, including two big baskets late that helped prevent the Wildcats from taking the lead.
Holmes finished with 10 points, eight in the second half.
Kansas State (14-5, 4-2) had tied the game at 64 on Shane Southwell’s twisting, off-balance layup with 5 seconds to play after Felix had missed two free throws that likely would have put the game out of reach.
“(Holmes) could have easily (scored), the first time,” Kansas State coach Bruce Weber said. “That’s a big shot. They’re close to being a Top 25 team, too. It’s going to be like this all year in the league.”
The game was tight the entire way as Ridley and Gipson battled under the basket and neither team let the other build any kind of offensive momentum. The biggest lead was six points.
“We let them get us in a grinder a little bit,” Texas coach Rick Barnes said.
More men's top 25
(At) No. 14 Kentucky 68, Texas A&M 51: Alex Poythress scored 16 for Kentucky (14-4, 4-1 Southeastern Conference)
(At) No. 20 Pittsburgh 76, Clemson 43: Talib Zanna scored 22 for Pittsburgh (17-2, 5-1 Atlantic Coast Conference) and hit 9 of 10 shots.