Three-point Barrage Sinks Wildcats at New Mexico

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. Blake Young scored 14 points and Cartier Martin added 11, but hot 3-point shooting by New Mexico in the second half helped send Kansas State to its first loss of the season as the Lobos defeated the Wildcats 78-54 Tuesday night at The Pit.

Former Kansas Jayhawk J.R. Giddens finished with 21 points to lead New Mexico (4-0), which connected on 7-of-16 (44 percent) from 3-point range over the final 20 minutes to take control of the game.

Kansas State (3-1), meanwhile, struggled to find its offensive rhythm all night and connected on just 20-of-70 attempts (29 percent) from the field.

The Wildcats trailed 41-31 early in the second half, when the Lobos opened up a 24-point lead during an 18-4 run that featured four 3-pointers.

K-State was able to respond as four separate Wildcats scored during a 12-5 spurt that made it 64-47.

But the Lobos just had too much fire power from beyond the arc for the Wildcats to get back in the game.

New Mexico quickly pushed its lead back to 20 points on a 3-pointer by Ryan Kersten and a bucket by Giddens and led by as many as 26 in the final minute of the game.

Kansas State actually got off to a solid start and led 13-9 at the 13:40 mark of the first half after Martin scored seven straight points and Young dropped in 3-pointer to cap a 10-0 run.

The lead proved to be short-lived, however, as Kansas State went the next 10 minutes without a field goal, igniting the crowd and the Lobos.

New Mexico scored 21 of the game’s next 22 points to take a 30-14 lead with just over five minutes to go in the half.

K-State rallied back to cut the deficit to single digits just 15 seconds before the break on a free thrown by Akeem Wright, but Kellen Walter beat the halftime buzzer with a 3-pointer to send the Lobos to the locker room up 41-29.

Kansas State returns to action Saturday night at Bramlage Coliseum as the Wildcats host Coppin State at 7 p.m.