Wildcats Drop Heartbreaker in Overtime

March 7, 2014

Box Score | Photo Gallery 

K-State Athletics

OKLAHOMA CITY, Okla. – Kansas State built a 16-point lead in the first half, but a late surge by Kansas in the second half and in overtime sent the Wildcats to an 87-84 loss in the first round of the 2014 Phillips 66 Big 12 Championships on Friday night in Chesapeake Energy Arena.

For the first time this season, Kansas State (11-19) saw five players reach double figures. Freshman Breanna Lewis led the Wildcats with her first career double-double and a career-best effort of 20 points and 14 rebounds. She also reset her career-high with five blocks and tied the K-State record for blocked shots in a Big 12 Championship game.

Joining Lewis in double figures were Katya Leick, Kindred Wesemann, Leticia Romero and Ashia Woods. In her final game as a Wildcat, Leick registered 17 points, including a career-high effort of 5-of-8 from beyond the arc. 

Wesemann also registered a career-best performance with 18 points. This was her seventh double figure game this season and her seventh in the last 11 games.

Romero struggled with her shot on Friday, as she was 4-of-21 from the field but was 6-of-6 from the free throw line and contributed nine assists, seven rebounds and two steals.

Woods came off the bench to record 11 points, six rebounds five steals and three assists. Woods’ five steals set the school record for steals in a Big 12 Championship game.

For the second straight game against KU, the Wildcats controlled the tempo and the scoreboard early. K-State jumped out to a 14-6 lead with 11:59 remaining in the first half. The Wildcats held the Jayhawks (13-18) without a field goal for the first six and a half minutes of the game and Breanna Lewis registered eight points and five rebounds in the first eight minutes.

K-State would build its lead to 16, 26-10, with 7:13 to play as Kindred Wesemann connected on her second straight 3-point field goal and her third of the first half.

Kansas would close to within three at the half, 34-31. The Jayhawks used a 17-4 run in the final 5:18 of the opening stanza to narrow the gap. K-State shot .333 in the first half and held a 21-11 lead in rebounds. Wesemann and Lewis led the Wildcats in the frame with 13 and 12 points, respectively.

A three-pointer from Bri Craig gave the Wildcats a 51-46 lead with 10:27 remaining, but Kansas answered with baskets from CeCe Harper and Gardner to narrow the game to one, 51-50, with 9:21 to play. The Wildcats responded with a five points from Leick to give K-State a 56-53 lead with 7:49 remaining.

KU captured its first lead of the game, 57-56, at the 7:19 mark of the second half on a Dakota Gonzalez layup. K-State answered, as Leick registered her fifth 3-point field goal of the night to put K-State back into the lead, 59-57, with 6:26 to play.

A steal and layup by Woods gave K-State a 69-64 lead with 2:48 to play in the second frame. Kansas quickly tied the game at 69, but a Romero jump shot put the Wildcats into the lead, 71-69, with 1:10 to play.

A pair of Gardner baskets put KU back into the lead with under 10 seconds to play. Romero charged down the floor with the ball and Lewis picked up a loose ball in the lane after a deflection and made the game-tying layup as the buzzer sounded. An official review confirmed the layup.

In overtime, K-State built a six-point lead at 82-76 and 84-78 with 2:11 to play. Kansas was able to make up the deficit and take the lead by connecting on 7-of-7 free throw attempts and a layup from Asia Boyd. A last second three-point field goal from Wesemann came up short.

Kansas was led by its All-Big 12 First Team selection Gardner. She tallied 29 points. Joining Gardner with 20 or more points was Harper with an even 20.

With one of the youngest rosters in the nation in terms of age and experience, K-State picked up some significant victories in the 2013-14 season. The Wildcats defeated No. 13 Iowa State, 80-74, on Jan. 18 in Manhattan which marked the eighth straight season K-State has defeated an opponent ranked among the Associated Press Top-25 poll. K-State also halted a 10-year, 13-game skid to Oklahoma on Jan. 29, with an 86-78 win in Bramlage.

On Feb 26, K-State ended a three-game skid and recorded its 22nd win in the last 27 meetings with Kansas in a 76-68 victory in Lawrence. The win marked the 350th career victory for K-State head coach Deb Patterson.   

The Wildcats were paced during the 2013-14 season by All-Big 12 Second Team selection and unanimous Big 12 All-Freshman Team recipient Romero. The freshman from Las Palmas, Spain, was a four-time Phillips 66 Big 12 Freshman of the Week recipient and is the first freshman in school history and the only freshman guard in NCAA Division I to register the combination of 400 or more points, 100 or more rebounds, 100 or more assists and 50 or more steals.