Wildcats look to bounce back from road loss against Buffs


The No. 16 Wildcats will look to overcome their third consecutive Big 12 road loss as they return home to face the Colorado Buffalos (11-12, 3-8 Big 12 Conference) for the first time this season.

Home games have proven to be good for K-State this season as the Wildcats (20-4, 7-4 Big 12) have yet to lose in Bramlage Coliseum, winning all 11 games played in Manhattan this season.

Under fourth-year head coach Kathy McConnell, Colorado comes to Manhattan after putting an end to a three-game losing streak Wednesday night. The Buffalos topped Kansas 69-62 in Boulder, Colo., thanks to three players registering double-digits in points.

The Wildcats are coming off their worst shooting performance of the season on Wednesday as they fell to the Missouri Tigers 52-43. K-State shot a mere 30 percent on 52 shot attempts.

Senior point guard Shalee Lehning missed her second consecutive game Wednesday because of a mononucleosis infection, and she is still listed as day-to-day.

With Lehning absent from the lineup, the Wildcats have placed freshman forward Jalana Childs in the starting lineup. Childs had a dominating performance in her first start Sunday, registering 14 points and pulling down 16 rebounds. Childs continued to contribute against the Tigers with four rebounds and eight points, even as Wednesday’s game marked the lowest point total of the season for Patterson’s squad.

The Cats gave up an early 8-0 lead as they fell into a shooting slump and finished the half shooting 26 percent on 28 shot attempts.

Colorado is led offensively by sophomore forward Brittany Spears, who ranks sixth in the Big 12 in scoring, averaging 16.9 points per contest.

However, Spears and her team will be facing the conference’s second best team defense, as K-State is allowing teams only 53.5 points per game.

Though K-State’s loss to Missouri dropped them to 7-4 in the Big 12, they remain in a four-way tie for third place in the conference. The top two teams are Oklahoma and Baylor, which both handed the Wildcats road losses earlier this season.

Tip-off for Saturday’s contest is scheduled for 2 p.m.