Wildcats drop the ball in Sunflower Showdown, losing to the Jayhawks

With the ball high in the air, Kansas State Wildcat junior forward Dean Wade and Kansas Jayhawk sophomore center Udoka Azubuike fight for possession at the beginning of the game. On Monday night this week, K-State men's basketball faced off against the Jayhawks but ended up losing 70-56. (Meg Shearer | Collegian Media Group)

The Kansas State men’s basketball team lost its home game versus Kansas 70-56 on Monday. After what transpired earlier in the season, it seemed like round two for the Wildcats.

On Jan. 13, the Wildcats traveled to Lawrence where they took on the Kansas Jayhawks. During that time, junior Barry Brown missed the buzzer-beating shot that would’ve had the Wildcats winning. Instead, they lost 72-73. Heartbreaking.

Sixteen days later, the Wildcats hosted the Jayhawks at home in Bramlage Coliseum. Every K-State fan wanted one thing in particular: revenge.

With a rustling sound, K-State students shake their newspapers as the speaker announces the Kansas Jayhawks before the game. On Monday night this week, K-State men's basketball faced off against the Jayhawks but ended up losing 70-56. (Meg Shearer | Collegian Media Group)

However, things did not go as planned for K-State. Every fan knew it was going to be an interesting game, as the first half ended with KU leading 40-27. The Wildcats shot 25.7 percent from the field, while the Jayhawks were at 70 percent. The Wildcats only made nine of the 25 baskets they attempted and two out of the 15 three-pointers.

Junior Dean Wade led the Wildcats at half with 13 points and had a few standout plays that definitely helped the Wildcats stay in contention. Senior Svi Mykhailiuk led the Jayhawks with 13 points as well.

As the second half begun, the Jayhawks went on a 0/9 run for the first six minutes of the quarter, giving the Wildcats a chance to advance their 27 points to 35 rather quickly. KU wouldn’t score their first points of the second half until senior Devonte Graham stepped up to do two free throws, where he made both.

Time progressed, and at times it looked like the Wildcats were going to make a comeback. It came down to an ugly performance on both sides of the ball. The game ended with angry fans, an upset head coach Bruce Weber and some nasty glares from fans to the referees.

As the last 10 seconds began to come off of the clock, there was a total of two different looks from the Wildcats on the court. Disappointment and sadness radiated from the players on the court, and fans filed out quietly when the scoreboard read 70-56.

K-State had lost its seventh Sunflower Showdown in a row.

12,528 people came from across the state to watch this matchup. For some, this is a happy day, beating the Wildcats another time. Before this game, the new AP rankings came out where K-State received 35 votes to get the unofficial rank of No. 26. They were one spot away from making this a ranked matchup, since Kansas was sitting at No. 7.

At the end of the game, Wade and sophomore Xavier Sneed were the only two players that were in double digits for the Wildcats. Wade finished with 20 points, eight rebounds and 40 minutes on the court. Sneed has 10 points, four rebounds and 30 minutes of play.

Weber said the Wildcats did no zone preparation going into the game. With Wade and Brown present at the press conference, it was rather quiet from both players.

“I don’t think we were in the rhythm at any point of the game,” Wade said. “I think we could’ve done better.”

When it came to moving onto the next one, Wade didn’t have too much to say, rather than just moving ahead.

“As a basketball player you’re going to lose games,” Wade said. “It’s just a matter of putting it behind you and focusing on the next game.”

Brown seemed very out of it during the press conference, as Weber had to repeat the two questions that were asked to him. Brown only reiterated one thing every K-State fan was thinking.

“It was a big missed opportunity,” Brown said.

The ball went out of bounds off of the Jayhawks, and Kansas State Wildcat junior gaurd Barry Brown Jr. is chosen to pass in the ball for the Wildcats. On Monday night this week, K-State men's basketball faced off against the Jayhawks but ended up losing 70-56. (Olivia Bergmeier | Collegian Media Group)

At the end of the day, three questions are presented. How will the Wildcats do in their next game against West Virginia? Will Weber see how necessary it is to prepare the zone? Will the Wildcats sink after this game?

On Saturday, the Wildcats will travel to Morgantown, West Virginia, where they will take on the Mountaineers at 3 p.m.

I'm DeAundra Allen, co-editor-in-chief and sports editor at the Collegian. I'm a junior in broadcast journalism and pre-law, with a minor in philosophy. I was born in Brighton, Colorado, home of La Placita and the Bulldogs. I moved to Kansas in 2010, and fell in love with press boxes at a young age. In my spare time, I talk about my pets, sports, and work towards going to law school.