Wildcats Close Door on Red Raiders

LUBBOCK, Texas - The No. 6 Kansas State Wildcats continue to take their show on the road and come away with wins. This time it was an 83-64 blowout of the Texas Tech Red Raiders. The win is K-State's sixth on the road in Big 12 Conference action this season losing only the opener at Missouri. On the season, the Wildcats are now 7-1 on the road overall.

The win was K-State's sixth straight road win as the Wildcats have been able to shoot well away from home. It was the fifth straight game K-State has shot 50 percent or better in the second half. The Wildcats shot 52 percent in the second half to help toward at 47.5 percentage for the game while Texas Tech (16-11, 4-9 Big 12) shot 37.5 in the contest.

K-State (23-4, 10-3) was led by Jacob Pullen with 28 points as he had the hot hand in the first half. A total of four Wildcats scored in double digits on the night with Denis Clemente and Jamar Samuels adding 14 points apiece and Curtis Kelly putting 12 points on the board. The Wildcats have now had four or more players score in double digits in 21 games this season and own an 18-3 record in those games.

Pullen took charge of the Wildcat offense early scoring more than half the team's points in the opening stanza netting 21 at the break with the rest of the team adding 18. The Wildcats are now 15-5 when Pullen scores more than 20 points in a game.

The Red Raiders could not find a way to slow Pullen as he shot a blistering 7-of-10 in the first half, including 2-of-4 from deep. Texas Tech had more balanced scoring in the opening half led by Nick Okorie with nine points hitting Tech's lone 3-pointer of the half. Pullen finished the night shooting 9-of-14 overall, 3-of-6 from long range and a perfect 7-of-7 at the free-throw line.

K-State jumped on the Red Raiders early with a 7-0 run to lead 12-5 and saw Tech battle back within two points with 7:00 remaining in the first half. The Wildcats responded with an 8-0 run to extend the lead back to 10 points and held that margin going into the break up39-29.

Out of the break, the Wildcats struggled to make baskets making just three at the 12-minute media break compared to Tech's four. Free throws helped Tech cut into the lead as well entering the media timeout down 47-40. After the Raiders made that push, the Wildcats answered right back with a quick 7-0 run to go back up by 14 points and continue applying pressure.

K-State led by as many as 15 points, but the Raiders managed to hang around with the Wildcats keeping the lead to single digits through much of the second half until Denis Clemente found his stroke again with approximately five minutes remaining in the contest. Clemente hit a pair of 3-pointers to put K-State back up by 12 and 16 points, respectively, putting the game out of reach as K-State out-scored Tech 16-6 in the final five minutes to get the road win.

The Wildcats return home to take on Missouri at 7 p.m. Saturday in Bramlage Coliseum. The game will be televised on ESPNU.

- k-statesports.com -