SE: Football Celebrates Senior Day
When K-State runs onto its home field for the final time during the 2015 season tomorrow afternoon, emotions will be at an all-time high.
Not only will tomorrow’s game against West Virginia (7-4, 4-4 Big 12) play a critical role in turning around an up-and-down season and helping K-State (5-6, 2-6 Big 12) reach bowl eligibility, but it will also be the last time playing at home for 18 Wildcat seniors.
“I have a great appreciation for each and every one of them,” said K-State head coach Bill Snyder about this year’s senior class. “They are all different young people, but they are all tremendous, good quality people. They’re caring people and guys who have really had an impact on Kansas State football and Kansas State in general.”
Snyder said he takes a moment to talk with each senior and share his feelings about them before they run out to meet their family on the field.
“It’s not anything that I have not said before, just a reaffirmation of my feelings toward them,” Snyder explained.
For Aaron Bennett, Reed Bergstrom, Travis Britz, Marquel Bryant, Morgan Burns, Jack Cantele, Dalton Converse, Kody Cook, Andre Davis, Luke Hayes, Nate Jackson, Kyle Klein, Matt Kleinsorge, Jordan Kupersmith, Boston Stiverson, Stanton Weber, Cody Whitehair and Dillon Wilson, after they take a moment with their coach, it will mark the last time they run onto Wagner Field before 50,000-plus passionate Wildcat fans.
“It’s a little surreal,” said Stiverson thinking about the final time he’ll play at home. “I remember five years ago like it was yesterday. It’ll be an emotional game; it will definitely be emotional.”
Tomorrow’s game kicks off at 3:30 p.m., in Bill Snyder Family Stadium and will be broadcast nationally on FS1, while it can also be heard across the K-State Sports Network.
K-State enters the game on a two-game winning streak and is riding that momentum into tomorrow’s matchup.
“Each win is bringing confidence and momentum with it,” said junior quarterback Joe Hubener of the team’s back-to-back wins, “but we still haven’t put together a full game of football. It’s usually just one good half. So our goal is to start well and finish well, to put it all together from the first snap to the last snap.”
Hubener is right. K-State football really hasn’t put together a complete game in Big 12 play this season. Against both Oklahoma State and TCU, the Cats came out strong in the first 30 minutes, but faltered in the second half. In the Wildcats’ win over Iowa State, it was the opposite – K-State started the first half slow but pulled it together in the second half for the comeback win.
Against a tough West Virginia team, it’s going to take a full four quarters of good football from the Cats to secure a win.
“Getting off to a quick start is huge,” said redshirt freshman center Dalton Risner. “And it’s not only getting off to a quick start, but it’s also coming out in the second half and getting off to a quick start then too. That’s going to be important against a West Virginia team who is 7-4, the best they’ve been in a few years. It’s great to get a good start, but we have to play a complete game.”
From start to finish, K-State and its seniors are ready to show fans what they’re made of one final time this year in Bill Snyder Family Stadium.
“We want to end this season on a high note with a victory at our home stadium,” said junior linebacker Will Davis. “Not just for the seniors, but for the fans, for everyone involved. Everyone deserves victory, especially on Senior Day, so it’ll be a big day for everyone.”
For game notes, stats, a fan guide (including the groundbreaking ceremony for Phase IIIB of BSFS) and more information about tomorrow’s game, please click here.
MEN’S BASKETBALL PLAYS FIRST ROAD GAME AT GEORGIA
K-State men’s basketball (5-1) faces its first true road test of the year, as the Wildcats travel to Athens, Georgia, to play SEC foe Georgia (3-2) tonight at 6 p.m. (CT) in Stegeman Coliseum. The game concludes a two-game series between the schools as the Bulldogs won the last meeting, 50-46, at Bramlage Coliseum on New Year’s Eve.
“I didn’t know (how we’d play) at home, I didn’t know (how we’d play) at the Sprint Center, but so far they’ve reacted well,” said K-State head coach Bruce Weber. “Everyone knows it’s different on the road, and we have to have character, toughness, chemistry and then execute down the stretch to win games. We have to play at a high level.”
This will be K-State’s first visit to the Peach State since ending a home-and-home series with Georgia State with a 74-61 win on Nov. 29, 1999.
For more information on tonight’s game, please click here.
VOLLEYBALL OPENS NCAA TOURNAMENT PLAY
K-State (17-11, 9-7 Big 12) opens NCAA Tournament play with a matchup against Wichita State (26-8, 15-3 MVC) this afternoon at 4:30 p.m., in Lincoln, Nebraska. The Wildcats and the Shockers are among four teams at the Lincoln sub-regional, as they are joined by No. 4 national seed Nebraska and first-time tournament participant Harvard. The two winners from Friday will face off in the second round on Saturday at 7 p.m.
Tomorrow evening’s appearance in the NCAA Tournament will mark the 16th in the history of K-State volleyball and will be the fourth trip to the tournament in the past five years.
The game is taking place at Lincoln’s Devaney Center, an environment K-State volleyball is quite familiar with as the Wildcats will open postseason play in the arena for the second straight year. K-State has made all of its last four tournament-opening trips to Lincoln, with 2011 and 2012 being played in the Nebraska Coliseum.
To continue reading about today’s match, please click here.
WOMEN’S BASKETBALL: DEFENSE OVERPOWERS UT ARLINGTON
K-State women’s basketball used one of its best defensive efforts of the season yesterday night to begin a stretch of three games in five days with a 61-41 win over UT Arlington on Thursday night in Bramlage Coliseum.
K-State held its second straight opponent below 49 points and held the advantage on the boards for the second straight game. Kindred Wesemann led K-State with her fourth straight game in double figures with 19 points while Shaelyn Martin pulled in 10 rebounds and dished out five assists for K-State.
For more information on last night’s women’s basketball win, please click here.