K-State Defense Stifles Texas Tech 65-46

Shane Southwell

Feb. 7, 2012

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MANHATTAN, Kan. – While the shots were not dropping early for Kansas State, the defense stepped up big as the Wildcats defeated Texas Tech 65-46 in one of its best defensive efforts of the season. Shane Southwell led the Wildcats with 13 points for a new career-high.

The opening half saw both teams struggle to make a shot, going a combined 12-of-46 from the field. Martavious Irving and Southwell were able to provide a spark off the bench scoring eight and seven points respectively. The Wildcats (17-6, 6-5) stepped it up on defense, forcing 13 turnovers and scoring 15 points from the defensive stops. Despite being outrebounded by seven and shooting seven percentage points lower than the Red Raiders (7-16, 0-11), the Wildcats went into intermission leading 31-17.

The second half saw the defense step up the tempo, frustrating Texas Tech with its full court press defense. K-State’s length forced the Red Raiders to take difficult shots. Texas Tech’s scoring draught continued as the team was held to no field goals from the 1:54 mark in the first half until the 10:12 mark of the second when Jaye Crockett made a jumper. The Wildcats built a 25-point lead halfway through the second stanza, but the Red Raiders were able to trim the deficit to 10 in the last five minutes of the game after a few 3-pointers fell. The Wildcats were able to seal the game from the free-throw line going 11-of-15 in the final five minutes.

The 46 points scored by the Red Raiders is tied for the fifth fewest points allowed by the Wildcats in a Big 12 Conference game. The last time K-State allowed fewer points in a conference game was in 2007 against Nebraska when the Cornhuskers tallied just 45.

With both teams struggling to hit shots, the Red Raiders’ shooting percentage of 28.9 percent is the lowest by a K-State opponent this season. On the other side, K-State’s shooting performance of just 30.0 (15-of-50) is the lowest of the season as well. But K-State overcame the poor shooting from the field by hitting 30-of-40 free throws. The 30 free throws is a new best for the season. The last time K-State made 30 or more free throws was on March 6, 2010 against Iowa State when the Wildcats drained 33 from the line.

The Wildcats will return to action on Saturday as the team travels to Austin, Texas, to face the Texas Longhorns. K-State won the first meeting between the two teams 84-80 on Jan. 18. The game can be viewed live on ESPN at 1 p.m.