K-State Edges U-20 Czech National Team

LUHAKOVICE, Czech Republic On the strength of a solid performance from Kelsey Nelson and a late three-point field goal and two free throws from Kari Kincaid, Kansas State dropped the U-20 Czech Republic national team on Saturday night, 67-62. This concludes game action for the Wildcats in Europe.


Nelson, a guard from Riley, Kan., registered a game-high 23 points, including 13 points in the second half. Nelson also hauled in a team-high eight rebounds and dished out three assists.


The Czech Republic held a 50-43 lead midway through the fourth quarter but a 7-0 run from the Wildcats, capped by a three-point field goal from Marlies Gipson evened the contest with 6:01 to play and forced the Czech team to call a timeout. This was the first tie in the contest since early in the second quarter.


The Czechs regrouped to take a 55-52 edge, but a three-point field goal from Shalin Spani with 4:02 to play evened the game. The Czechs were able to bounce back and take another three-point lead at 60-57, but a Danielle Zanotti three tied the score with 1:40 to play. Zanotti finished with 12 points and two rebounds.


The Czechs could not capitalize on their next offensive possession and Kincaid drained a three from the right wing with 41 seconds to play for the Wildcats’ first lead of the contest at 63-60. A missed jumper in the lane forced the Czechs to foul and grabbed Kincaid with 13.1 seconds remaining. Kincaid, who finished with seven points, drained both free throws for a 65-60 lead.


Nelson stepped in front of a Czech pass with under 10 seconds to play and secured the win with a pair of free throws.


The Wildcats trailed at halftime for the second time on the tour, 31-27, as the Czech Republic took advantage of the FIBA defensive rules to control the Wildcats’ offense.


K-State will finish their tour of the Czech Republic, Slovakia and Austria on Thursday. To stay in touch with what is happening on the trip, visit Danielle Zanotti’s diary at www.kstatesports.com.


Kansas State Stats from Saturday’s contest

Player (points-rebounds-assists-steals)

Nelson, Kelsey (23-8-3-1)

Sweat, Ashley (4-7-2-3) one block

Lehning, Shalee (7-6-5-5)

Hill, Kelsey (0-1-0-0)

Spani, Shalin (5-0-1-1)

Zanotti, Danielle (12-2-0-1)

Kincaid, Kari (7-4-1-2)

Gipson, Marlies (9-5-3-3) one block