K-State Powers Past Alcorn State, 80-22

MANHATTAN, Kan. Kansas State put together its second straight game of stellar defense and Shalin Spani had a career night as the Wildcats dismantled Alcorn State, 80-22, Friday evening in the first round of the 2008 Commerce Bank Wildcat Classic at Bramlage Coliseum.

K-State was relentless on the defensive end from the start as it held the Lady Braves scoreless for the first 12:11 before a pair of free throws by Sharnika Breedlove. Alcorn State did not register its first field goal until the 4:53 mark of the first half, its first in 21 shot attempts. Furthermore, the Wildcats’ 58-point margin of victory was the largest since K-State won by 59 against Mississippi Valley State in the 2006 Commerce Bank Wildcat Classic.

Spani led four Wildcats who scored in double figures with 16 points on 3-of-6 shooting, including a 2-for-5 mark from behind the three-point line. She was also a perfect 8-for-8 from the free-throw line, both a career-best and a season-high for the Wildcats. The Lee’s Summit, Mo., native also added five rebounds.

Marlies Gipson finished right behind Spani with 14 points on 6-of-7 shooting. The senior also pulled down three rebounds and tallied a season-high five blocks, besting her four-block outing last Friday at Jacksonville.

Shalee Lehning added 12 points and 10 rebounds for her 16th career double-double, which moved her into sixth place in school history. The 10 assists Friday evening moved Lehning into fifth place in the Big 12 in career assists.

Ashley Sweat added 11 points and a game-high eight rebounds.

The Wildcats held the Lady Braves to just six field goals on 49 attempts (12.2 percent). The six field goals made were the second-fewest in school history behind the Wildcats’ effort against Mississippi Valley State in 2006 when they held the Devilettes to just five field goals.

Breedlove led Alcorn State with six points on 2-of-7 shooting, while Maria Marshall led the Lady Braves with four rebounds.

Kansas State will face Arkansas, who defeated Mississippi Valley State Friday afternoon, in the championship game of the 2008 Commerce Bank Wildcat Classic. Tipoff is set for 4 p.m.