It was a cold Saturday afternoon in Manhattan. The town was in a blizzard warning, but inside Bramlage Coliseum the Kansas State men’s basketball team was on fire. The Wildcats cruised to a 85-46 win over the Oklahoma State Cowboys.
It was all Wildcats from the beginning. K-State took control of the game by jumping out to a 15-0 lead.
Oklahoma State tried to make some adjustments to slow the Wildcats down by calling a timeout in the third minute after the lead was 8-0, but they were unable to slow them down.
It all started with senior guard Barry Brown, who got a steal on the Cowboys’ opening possession, taking the ball down the court and slamming a one-handed dunk to get the Wildcats on the board.
That was the beginning of the onslaught.
“We got off to a good start,” senior forward Dean Wade said. “A lot of it had to do with our defense. Getting out in transition, easy steal points. Barry [Brown’s] steal on the first possession was big. Stuff like that gets everything going.”
It was a team effort on offense as five players – senior guard Kamau Stokes, Brown, junior forward Xavier Sneed, freshman guard Shaun Neal-Williams and junior forward Austin Trice – scored double figures.
Junior forward Makol Mawien and sophomore forward Levi Stockard scored eight points. Wade and sophomore guard Mike McGurl both scored six points.
The Cowboys didn’t get on the board until the 14:18 mark when freshman guard Isaac Likekele was able to get to the free-throw line to make it a 15-2 game.
K-State shot 64 percent on field goals in the first half, while Oklahoma State shot 23.1 percent. The Cowboys came up empty on nine three-point attempts, and the Wildcats shot an exceptional 5-of-11. This was all part of the Wildcats’ 42-18 halftime lead.
The Wildcats kept their foot on the gas pedal in the second half, as they opened the half with back-to-back threes from Xavier Sneed and Mike McGurl.
In the eleventh minute of the second half with a 59-31 lead, head coach Bruce Weber started rest his starters and some of the reserve players in the game as the Wildcats went on to win comfortably.
The Wildcats flexed their depth in the game; bench players scored 38 points.
The Wildcats made a total of 10 three-pointers and shot a 62 percent on 52 total field goal attempts.
The Wildcats (21-6, 11-6 conference) now head to Lawrence to go for a series sweep on the Kansas Jayhawks in a crucial Big 12 battle.
“We are a good team on the road,” said Wade. “We are just going to go in [to Allen Fieldhouse] and play K-State Basketball.”