Oct. 12, 2010
Following yesterday's preview of the 2010-11 K-State women's basketball backcourt, today we preview the K-State frontcourt. Click here to view the K-State backcourt preview.
MANHATTAN, Kan. - Kansas State enters its 43rd season of women’s basketball attempting to shake off the first below .500 season in nine years (14-18 overall record, 5-11 Big 12), that saw the Wildcats fight through a number of injuries which depleted the roster significantly by the end of the season. K-State’s fortune could have been drastically different, as the Wildcats suffered seven losses by six or fewer points.
During the 2009-10 season, Kansas State became the 11th program in NCAA Division I women’s basketball history to reach the 775-win plateau (782-467, .626). With 18 wins during the 2010-11 season, Kansas State will join the 800-win club which features just eight current members.
Returning to the Bramlage Coliseum sidelines for her 15th season is head coach Deb Patterson. The all-time winningest women’s basketball coach in school history with a record of 279-164 (.630), Patterson has guided the program to 22 or more wins in seven of the last nine seasons and eight consecutive postseason appearances (six NCAA Tournaments and two WNITs) from 2001-02 to 2008-09.
K-State will look to bounce back into the postseason with the return of eight letterwinners, including three starters. The Wildcats also added five newcomers to bolster its 2010-11 roster to help replace the graduation of two-time first team All-Big 12 selection, Ashley Sweat, and veteran guard Kari Kincaid.
Kansas State will need to replace the production of Sweat, a two-time All-Big 12 first team recipient. During her senior campaign, Sweat ascended the K-State career scoring list and finished the with 1,805 points to rank third in school history. She averaged a team-leading 16.1 points and was the squad’s second-leading rebounder with 5.1 per game.
K-State returns considerable experience in the frontcourt despite the loss of Sweat, as the Wildcats return juniors Jalana Childs and Branshea Brown. Both will be counted on to provide a solid post presence for the Wildcats for the second straight season.
Childs, a product of Orlando, Fla., started 31 games and played in all 32 as she notched a career-high 7.3 points per game and 4.4 rebounds per game. Childs led the Wildcats in field goal percentage (.427) and offensive rebounds (66) while scoring in double figures in 12 games. She will again be counted on to be K-State’s post scorer, while also providing leadership and an improved presence on the boards.
Brown will also be providing a solid post presence for K-State after seeing action in 31 of 32 games in 2009-10. The product of Walterboro, S.C., averaged a career-high 3.1 points and 4.3 rebounds. Brown registered a career-high of 12 points against UTSA on Dec. 21 and pulled in a career-high 11 rebounds against Nebraska on March 6.
Sophomore guard/forward Alina Voronenko will look to bounce back from a stress fracture in her foot that sidelined her for all but seven games of the 2009-10 season.
The K-State frontcourt will be aided by the arrival of freshman Brianna Kulas. The 6-0 product of Mission, Kan., was a 2009-10 Sporting News High School All-American honorable mention recipient and competed in the 2010 Hy-Vee/Pepsi Challenge and tallied 16 points in the game. Kulas finished her career at Shawnee Mission North with senior year averages of 16.7 points, 6.0 rebounds, 1.5 blocks, 1.4 steals and 1.2 assists.
Women’s basketball season tickets begin at $78 for general admission, while bench and chairback seating is available for $99 and $132, respectively. K-State is also offering a “Wildcat 4-Pack” this season which consists of four general admission tickets for $200.
Season tickets are only $50 for those with military IDs stationed at Fort Riley. The most convenient way to order tickets is online at www.kstatesports.com. Tickets may also be purchased in person at the K-State Athletic Ticket Office in Bramlage Coliseum or by calling toll-free, (800) 221-CATS.