Late Fourth Quarter Rally Sends K-State to Win Seven


GAME RECAP

66

71

23/RV
AUBURN
TIGERS
6-2 (0-0 SEC)

RV/NR
K-STATE
WILDCATS
7-0 (0-0 Big 12)

LEADERS:
K. Frerking: 22 pts., 6 reb., 4 asst.
J. McKay: 15 pts., 3 reb., 3 asst.
B. Montgomery: 11 pts., 5 reb., 2 asst.

LEADERS:
K. Wesemann: 16 pts. 2 reb,, 4 asst.
B. Lewis: 13 pts., 9 reb.
P. Williams: 11 pts., 5 reb.

TEAM 1Q 2Q 3Q 4Q F
(23/rv) Auburn
21
11
16
18 66
(rv/-) K-State 13
21
18
19 71


MANHATTAN, Kansas – A 10-1 run in the late stages of the fourth quarter sent Kansas State to its seventh straight win, downing (23) Auburn in the SEC/Big 12 Challenge on Thursday night, 71-66. Kansas State has now opened the season with a 7-0 record for the first time since the 2012-13 season and just the sixth time in program history.

Thursday’s win by the Wildcats was the lone Big 12 win on the first night of the SEC/Big 12 Challenge, as Oklahoma (at Kentucky) and Texas (vs. South Carolina) dropped their matchups. The win marked K-State’s 11th straight season with a win over an Associated Press top-25 opponent.

Kansas State (7-0) was led by senior guard Kindred Wesemann with 16 points and four assists. This was her seventh straight game in double figures. Joining Wesemann in double digits were senior center and Naismith Trophy candidate Breanna Lewis with 13 points and nine rebounds and freshman forward Peyton Williams with 11 points and five rebounds off the bench.

Junior guard/forward Shaelyn Martin contributed a diverse stat line off the bench of nine points, nine rebounds and seven assists. Martin tallied a pair of free throws in the late stages of the contest to seal the K-State win.

Auburn (6-2) was paced by Katie Frerking with a game-high 22 points and six rebounds. Also in double figures for the Tigers were Janiah McKay with 15 points and Brandy Montgomery with 11 points.

After being out rebounded in the first half, 18-10, Kansas State controlled the board in the second half by holding a 29-8 advantage including 12 offensive boards for a 12-0 edge in second chance points in the second stanza. K-State has now won 28 straight games, including all seven this season when leading on the boards.

K-State shot 47.1 percent (24-of-51) from the field and held Auburn to a 37.1 percent (23-of-62) effort.

Auburn used a 10-2 run to build a five-point lead, 10-5, with 5:42 remaining in the first quarter. Katie Frerking and Janiah McKay were responsible for eight of the 10 Auburn points during the early run. The Tigers would eventually build its lead to eight at the end of the first quarter, 21-13. The 21 points were the most first quarter points K-State has surrendered this season. Auburn bolstered its lead by outrebounding K-State 14-3 in the opening period.

Wesemann and Eternati Willock helped push K-State into a 34-32 lead at the half, as Kansas State outscored Auburn 21-11 in the second quarter. Wesemann tallied seven points and Willock registered six in the second frame.

Kansas State opened the first five minutes of the second quarter with a 13-2 run to take a 26-25 lead with 4:04 left in the opening half. During the run, Willock notched all six of her points. Wesemann gave K-State a 29-28 lead with 3:03 left by drilling her second 3-pointer of the quarter. The Wildcats ended the first half scoring with Williams hauling in an offensive board and cashing in the ensuing layup with 48 seconds left.

K-State shot 56.5 percent (13-of-23) from the field in the opening half, dishing out 10 assists on 13 made field goals. Auburn was 39.4 percent (13-of-33) from the field and outrebounded the Wildcats, 18-10.

Auburn came out of the halftime break firing from beyond the arc, going 3-of-3 from deep in the first two minutes to take a 41-36 lead with 8:06 remaining. A pair of 3-pointers from Brandy Montgomery and one from Frerking opened the scoring for Auburn.

Kansas State answered with a 12-2 run over the next four minutes to grab a 48-43 lead with 3:45 left in the third. Willock started the run with a layup and a free throw. Wesemann then buried her third 3-pointer of the game to bring the Wildcats to within one, 43-42. Williams then carded four straight points and Kayla Goth buried a pullup jumper in transition to force an Auburn timeout.

K-State held a 52-48 lead entering the fourth quarter and Wesemann’s fourth 3-pointer of the night gave the Wildcats a 57-52 edge with 6:43 remaining. Auburn responded with a lightning quick 10-0 run to snare a 62-57 lead.

A Martin 3-pointer with 4:49 to play brought K-State to within two, 62-60, and was the start of the decisive 10-1 run. Three free throws and a layup by Lewis sent K-State in front 65-63 and Williams added two more free throws for a 67-63 lead with 1:48 left.

A Montgomery three-pointer narrowed the game to 67-66 with 1:27 to play, but Lewis followed her own miss and put the carom in to give K-State a 69-66 lead to just over a minute to play. Martin sealed the margin of victory with her late free throws.

Kansas State will make its first attempt at head coach Jeff Mittie’s 500th career win on Sunday, as K-State will travel north to face Omaha at 2 p.m., at Baxter Arena. Tickets are available by visiting www.omavs.com or by calling (402) 554-4142. The game will be available on the K-State Sports Network and for free at www.kstatesports.com.

Noteworthy
• K-State is in its 49th season of women’s basketball and owns an overall record of 898-556… Head coach Jeff Mittie owns a career record of 499-262, including a 45-27 mark in three seasons at K-State.
• K-State leads the series, 2-0… K-State is 70-63 all-time against teams from the SEC… Head coach Jeff Mittie is 1-0 against Auburn in his career.
• Kansas State is now 7-0 for the first time under head coach Jeff Mittie… This is the sixth time (2012-13, 2008-09, 1983-84, 1980-81, 1968-69) in the 49-year history of the program that K-State has started a season 7-0 and the first time.
• The Wildcats have an all-time record of 212-87 (.709) in the month of December… Under Mittie, K-State is 13-2 in December.
• K-State’s starting lineup: guards - Kindred Wesemann, Karyla Middlebrook and Kayla Goth; forwards – Eternati Willock; center - Breanna Lewis… This was the first game for this lineup… K-State has used five different starting lineups this season… Second career start for Willock… Fifth career K-State start for Middlebrook and the 75th of her collegiate career… Wesemann has played in 101 career games and started 80... Lewis has played in 101 career games and started 96.
• K-State has made a three-point field goal in 313 straight games... The streak dates back to Feb. 7, 2007.
• Kansas State held a 39-26 advantage on the boards… K-State has held the edge on the glass in all seven games this season… The Wildcats have now won 28 straight games when holding the edge in rebounding… Since the 2001-02 season, K-State is 192-25 (.885) when outrebounding its opponent.
• Kansas State led 34-32 at the half on Thursday… The Wildcats have led at the half in every game this season… Since 2001-02, K-State is 260-36 (.878) when leading at the half.
• Lewis notched her 59th career game in double figures for scoring… This was her 17th career game with 20 or more points… With her 13 points, Lewis moved into 22nd on the K-State career scoring list with 1,177 points… Lewis tallied nine rebounds, which is her 70th career game with five or more rebounds… She ranks 14th in school history for career rebounds with 644.
• Wesemann carded her 42nd career game in double figures for points, including her seventh this season… She finished the day 4-of-9 from beyond the arc, her 58th career game with two or more made  Wesemann has made 197 three-pointers in her career and ranks sixth in program history… With her four assists on Thursday, she remains 18th on the K-State career assists list with 248.
• Shaelyn Martin recorded nine rebounds for her 47th career game with five or more rebounds... She also handed out seven assists, her 18th career game with five or more assists… Martin is now tied for 20th in school history for career assists with 236.
• Peyton Williams notched her second game this season with 10 or more points… This was her fifth game this season with five or more rebounds.