The Kansas State men’s basketball team hosted the University of South Carolina Upstate on Tuesday night, where they won 86-49. The Wildcats are now 8-1.
The Wildcats led the Spartans 43-23 at halftime. Junior Kamau Stokes led the team with 15 points, followed by junior Dean Wade with eight points. Sophomore Makol Mawien and graduate Mawdo Sallah were tied with six points. At half, K-State was shooting 50 percent for two-pointers and 57.1 percent for three-pointers.
Upstate was led by junior Malik Moore with eight points. Followed by Moore was junior Jure Span with five points. Upstate had a two-pointer shooting average of 31 percent and a three point shooting average of 31.3 percent.
For K-State, Stokes led the Wildcats with points 17 points, followed by Barry Brown with 15 points and Wade with 13 points. K-State gained another 43 points in the second half, with an overall shooting for two-pointer 50.8 percent, while the three pointer overall shooting average was 48 percent. K-State only missed two free throws tonight, making that shooting average 87.5 percent.
For Upstate, Moore led with 16 points, followed by junior Carson Smith with 11 points, and Jure with seven points. Upstate’s two-pointer shooting average was 36.5 percent, while their three-pointer shooting average was 33.3 percent. Upstate only missed one of their four free throws, giving them a 75 percent free throw average.
When they were on the road Sunday against Vanderbilt, K-State came forth to beat the Commodores, 84-79. The areas that were still needing improvement included limiting their defensive turnovers. Right off of the bat, K-State showed their strong defense and how well they were able to guard within minutes. From the last home game against Oral Roberts, K-State has made major improvements within the past week.
K-State only had 13 fouls, a major improvement from the past few weeks. A lot of this game was pretty much in K-State’s full control. Maybe it was because Upstate had a record of 3-7, but it seemed like the Wildcats had something to prove coming back after the game. The fact that head coach Bruce Weber wasn’t screaming until he was blue a majority of the game is a great sign. The amount of energy the team brought was explosive.
Brown and Stokes showed again that they are K-State’s new dynamic scoring duo. Together, they scored 32 points, proving hat they are a huge part of K-State offensive game.
Immediately after the game, Stokes addressed this idea, saying they were familiar with each other their mind during the game.
“This is our third year together,” Stokes said. “We know each other’s games. I feel very comfortable with [Brown.]”
Weber talked about the chemistry between Stokes and Brown in the post-game press conference.
“I think that they ironically get mad at me,” Weber said. “I don’t let them practice together. … They’re familiar with each other, they’re older they’re smarter. … It’s good; it’s fun to coach them. Experienced guards make it easier to coach.”
Weber said he was impressed overall with the defense and the energy, which I think we can all agree that everyone else was as well.