Sooners erase 21-point deficit, beat Wildcats

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The K-State women’s basketball team had early success Sunday, leading by as many as 21 points, but fell to Oklahoma’s second half outburst. The Sooners galloped away with a 64-58 victory.

The Wildcats had what they wanted going into halftime. A 16-point lead seemed enough to keep them ahead the rest of the way; however, it was not. Head coach Deb Patterson explained the team’s meltdown.

“We saw two very different personalities from our team in the first and second half,” Patterson said. “We got real passive and tentative on the offensive end of the floor. We became less aggressive on the boards and over the course of time, for every mistake we made, Oklahoma capitalized.”

Oklahoma started early when senior guard Nyeshia Stevenson nailed a 3-pointer off the tip. However, K-State went on two early runs in the first half including a 10-0 spark that lasted five minutes to take the lead at 22-9.

K-State held a 34-18 halftime lead, thanks to senior forward Ashley Sweat’s 13 points. Stevenson led the Sooners with 10 points on 4-of-6 shooting. The Wildcats shot 39 percent from the field, including 44 percent from beyond the arc.

K-State continued to make shots early in the second half, jumping out to a 43-22 margin with 16 minutes to go. However, this was quickly overlooked when Oklahoma went on a 15-0 run in just four minutes.

“Everybody just came together after a poor first half where we couldn’t match their intensity,” said Oklahoma head coach Sherri Coale. “Amanda Thompson grabbed a great rebound for us, and that helped our team compete at a high level the rest of the way.”

Both teams traded baskets late in the game after Oklahoma used its 15-0 run to make things close. Oklahoma then took a one-point lead with 2:10 remaining. The team outplayed the Wildcats the rest of the way to earn the six-point decision.

Sweat finished with 19 points on 6-of-17 shooting with 0-5 from beyond the arc. Stevenson led the Sooners with 24 points, including four 3-pointers. Thompson also recorded a double-double with 17 points and 11 boards.

Oklahoma’s leading scorer coming into the game, junior guard Danielle Robinson, only had two points in the first half but finished with 10, seven below her average. The Sooners were a perfect 13-of-13 from the charity strike, including Robinson’s eight.

“I felt like this was a tale of two halves where we were the aggressor in the first,” Sweat said. “It’s all about mental toughness.

“Once they scored two baskets in the second half and we were up by 15, you would have felt like it was a two-point game. That’s when we were back on our heels, and it’s something we can’t let happen.”

The Wildcats had nine first-half steals, but only one in the second. They finished the game shooting 35 percent from the floor, while Oklahoma shot 43 percent.

The loss brings the Wildcats’ record to 12-14 overall and 4-8 in the conference. Oklahoma is now 19-7 with a 9-3 conference record.

K-State will look to bounce back against the Texas Tech Red Raiders this Wednesday at Bramlage Coliseum. Tipoff is scheduled for 7 p.m.

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