The Wildcats got a tougher than expected test in their opener, but were able to defeat Charleston Southern 72-67 on Friday night. The Wildcats were led by Rodney McGruder, who had a double-double with 18 points and 11 rebounds.
After getting up 24-16 midway through the first half, K-State brought in some players off the bench. The backups were not able to keep the lead as Charleston Southern ended the half on a 33-11 run.
The Wildcats came out in the second half as Mcgruder got an easy bucket just seconds into the half. He turned to the crowd to motioned for them to get loud, and they appeared to listen.
K-State turned it up a notch on the defensive end as they did not allow Southern to score a basket in the first 13 minutes of the second half.
Trailing by one with 2:30 left in the game, sophomore Will Spradling hit his only three pointer of the game, and gave the Wildcats a lead that they expanded on to win by 5.
Besides Mcgruder, Jordan Henriquez led the team with 11 points and nine rebounds. The Wildcats will be back in action on Monday as they play host to Loyola Chicago.