Women’s basketball eyeing statement win over ranked Texas

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Lady Wildcats celebrate and cheer for a recent play on Nov. 14, 2014 at Bramlage Coliseum. The women's basketball team won against SIUE 81-55. (Rodney Dimick | The Collegian)

K-State women’s basketball returns home tonight, looking to rattle off the third win in a positive two-week stretch.

The Wildcats (13-7, 3-6) haven’t won three-straight games in over a month, but are currently riding a two-game winning streak coming off a tightly-contested 41-38 win over Texas Tech on Saturday.

Senior forward Ashia Woods led the way with 11 points and seven rebounds in the victory over the Red Raiders. Woods has been stellar of late and leads the team overall in rebounds and steals with 6.9 and 2.2 respectively.

Closely behind Woods, Junior guard Bri Craig added nine points on 3-4 shooting. Down low, sophomore forward Breanna Lewis dominated the paint with 11 rebounds and three blocks to go along with her six points.

Lewis leads the team with 11.3 points and 3.5 blocks per game this season, and is just one of nine players in the country averaging 10 points, five rebounds, three blocks and one steal all per game.

Against Texas Tech, sophomore guard Kindred Wesemann struggled shooting the ball, finishing just 1-11 from the field.

However, her 3-point shooting ability will be needed as the Wildcats welcome in No. 20 Texas (15-5, 4-5) into Bramlage Coliseum.

The Longhorns opened their season with 13 wins, but have since dropped five of their last seven games, including a 64-59 loss Saturday to TCU in Fort Worth, Texas.

Despite the loss, junior center Imani McGee-Stafford was stellar across the board, finishing with 22 points on 10-16 shooting and eight rebounds.

Big 12 Pre-Season Freshman of the Year Ariel Atkins added 13 points, as did sophomore forward Kelsey Lang, who is the team leader in field goal percent. Atkins’ scored 8 of her 13 points from the charity stripe, while Lang finished 6-12 shooting to go along with her seven rebounds.

Texas enters averaging 69.2 points per game, almost 13 points better than the Wildcats. K-State certainly hasn’t been prolific on the offensive side of the ball this season, but it has been stingy defensively. The Wildcats lead the Big 12 in scoring defense, allowing just 52.9 points per game.

The all-time series between K-State and Texas belongs to the Longhorns, though by just a slim 15-12 margin. Wildcats head coach Jeff Mittie is 1-5 in his career against Texas, with the lone win coming last year while he was at TCU.

A win over the Longhorns would boost the Wildcats into fifth place in the conference standings and just a game out of third place behind 20-1 No. 3 Baylor and Oklahoma. Two weeks ago, K-State was dead last with just one win in conference play.

Tipoff between K-State and No. Texas is set for 6 p.m. in Bramlage Coliseum.

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