SE: Part 1: Ohlde, Wecker Reflect on K-State Careers

K-State Athletics will honor a group of 10 outstanding individuals next weekend with their induction into the K-State Athletics Hall of Fame. This group marks the 11th class in the history of the K-State Athletics Hall of Fame, and will be honored with an induction ceremony on Friday, Jan. 29, before being recognized at halftime of the men’s basketball game against Ole Miss at 1 p.m., in Bramlage Coliseum the following day. Stay tuned to K-State Sports Extra throughout the next couple weeks for more information about each of this year’s K-State Athletics Hall of Fame Inductees. 

The impact Nicole Ohlde and Kendra Wecker made on the K-State women’s basketball program is no secret – far from it. 

Ohlde, who played from 2000-04 and Wecker, who played 2001-05, are remembered every time a fan walks into Bramlage Coliseum. Their retired jerseys – Ohlde’s No. 3 and Wecker’s No. 53 – hang side by side in the rafters above the Wildcats’ home court; their names are forever etched in the K-State history book. 

They both earned Big 12 Player of the Year honors during their thrilling Wildcat careers (Ohlde in 2003 and 2004, Wecker in 2005) and are both inductees of the Kansas Sports Hall of Fame. They’ve celebrated their Wildcat careers time and time again, and are ready to celebrate them yet again. 

Next weekend, the duo will be inducted into the K-State Athletics Hall of Fame, the highest honor a former student-athlete can receive from its university.

“It’s really the epitome of what you can do at your university as a collegiate athlete,” said Wecker. “To be inducted into the K-State Athletics Hall of Fame, it’s a great, great honor and something that I will remember forever.”

Their induction marks a time of reminiscing, a time of celebration.

“I was shocked; I wasn’t expecting it whatsoever,” said Ohlde. “I was also very humbled by it. I think, as you get older and things like this happen, it means a lot more. I’ve been out of playing basketball for three years and out of K-State for almost 12 years. So it’s been awhile, but when you look back, it’s just beyond humbling to be voted into a Hall of Fame like this from a school; you absolutely love and adore.”

In their three seasons together (2001-04), Ohlde and Wecker helped lead K-State to 80 wins, three consecutive NCAA Tournament appearances, a Sweet 16 appearance in 2002, and a 2004 co-Big 12 regular season title.

During her Wildcat career, Ohlde was a two-time Consensus First Team All-American and a four-time All-Big 12 selection after breaking the school’s all-time records in scoring (2,161 points), rebounding (970 rebounds) and blocked shots (201). A 6-foot-5 forward from Clay Center, Kansas, Ohlde was just as sharp in the classroom as on the court as she was a three-time Academic All-Big 12 First Team selection and was named the Big 12 Female Athlete of the Year following her senior season.

“We had a great time on the court and off the court too,” Ohlde said, reflecting on her time at K-State. “I think what made it all so special was that we really got along well off the court. We had a really unique bond with the whole team; hanging out, having a good time and that translated over to the court, especially with winning the Big 12 Championship. We just knew that we were there for each other… that we’d run through a brick wall for each other. So when push came to shove, we were there for one another and we helped each other get better because we all desired and wanted the same thing.”

Ohlde was drafted No. 6 overall by the Minnesota Lynx in the 2004 WNBA Draft and went on to play seven seasons in the WNBA (2004-08 with the Lynx, 2009 with the Phoenix Mercury, 2010 with the Tulsa Shock).

A year behind Ohlde, Wecker came to K-State in 2001 and was quick to make a difference for the Wildcats. She was named a Kodak/WBCA All-American in 2005 as well as the 2005 Big 12 Conference Player of the Year. A 5-foot-11 forward from Marysville, Kansas, Wecker was a four-time All-Big 12 Selection as well as a three-time Academic All-Big 12 First Team selection. She went on to surpass Ohlde’s scoring record by scoring 2,333 career points. She also holds the records for most career double-doubles (52), career field goals made (935), career field goals attempted (1,913), career minutes played (4,141) and consecutive free throws made (28). 

“We had some really great games against Texas,” said Wecker when asked about some of her favorite memories of playing at K-State. “My sophomore year, we went down to Austin and won in triple overtime, so that was an awesome game. Then going to the Sweet 16 my freshman year and winning the Big 12 my junior year, those are the bigger moments that stand out. But it was just the day-to-day stuff; it was all really special.”

Wecker was drafted fourth overall in the 2005 WNBA draft by the San Antonio Silver Stars and went on to play three seasons in the WNBA before an injury cut her career short. 

To be continued… to read Part Two, please click here.

Also see:
WOMEN’S BASKETBALL LOCKS DOWN TCU FOR SECOND STRAIGHT WIN
For the second time this week, K-State women’s basketball used a strong defensive performance to secure a league win as the Wildcats sent a season-high crowd home happy with a 58-49 win over TCU.

K-State (12-5, 2-4 Big 12) held the TCU (11-6, 3-3 Big 12) offense to 28.3-percent shooting from the field, including a 25.0-percent effort from beyond the arc. The Wildcats have held seven opponents to 49 points or less this season and are 98-3 (.970) over the last 15 seasons when holding an opponent to fewer than 49 points.

The Wildcats were led by junior center and All-Big 12 candidate Breanna Lewis with a game-high 25 points, nine rebounds, two blocks and two steals. Sophomore guard/forward Shaelyn Martin added seven points, 10 rebounds and five assists.

For highlights, the box score, postgame quotes and more on the Wildcats’ win over TCU, please click here. 
 
TRACK AND FIELD TAKES SECOND AT KSU-KU-WSU SHOWDOWN
K-State track and field finished with 14 first-place finishes and senior Akela Jones was named high point scorer of the meet as the Wildcats finished in second place with a combined team score of 234 points at the KSU-KU-WSU Showdown on Friday. 
 
Kansas went on to win the meet with a team score of 254 total points, while Wichita State finished in third place with a total team score of 203 points. 
 
Jones continued her impressive run of form, winning both the long jump (6.50m/21-04.00), which set a new meet record and the 60 meter hurdles (8.25). She also finished second in the 200 meter dash with a time of 24.30 and fifth in shot put with a throw of 13.55m to earn high point scorer of the meet with 21 points. 
 
To continue reading about the track and field team’s trip to Lawrence, please click here.
 
MEN’S BASKETBALL FALLS TO NO. 17/18 IOWA STATE
K-State men’s basketball fell behind early and could never recover, as No. 17/18 Iowa State posted a 76-63 win before 12,462 fans in Bramlage Coliseum on Saturday.

The Cyclones used a 15-0 run midway through the first half to take control of the contest early before the Wildcats battled to within 50-45 with 9:45 left in the second half. However, the more experienced squad won out, as All-American Georges Niang ignited a quick 7-0 run with a 3-pointer out of a timeout to push the game out of reach. The margin never got closer than seven points the rest of the way.
 
To continue reading, please click here.


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