PREVIEW: Women’s basketball ends regular season on road against Oklahoma

Sophomore center Ayoka Lee rises over four Oklahoma Sooners for a layup at Bramlage Coliseum in Manhattan, Kansas, on Jan. 31, 2021. Oklahoma beat K-State 80-78. (Photo courtesy of Scott Weaver)

A long and disappointing regular season for the women’s basketball team is coming to an end Sunday when Kansas State takes on the Oklahoma Sooners on the road.

The Wildcats are coming off a loss against No. 20 West Virginia, a game in which they played well but were unable to put all pieces together to pull off the upset.

Sitting at 8-16, and 3-14 in Big 12 Conference play, K-State has one more chance to compete for a victory before the Big 12 Tournament.

It will not be easy, but K-State does have a more favorable matchup against the Sooners than against other Big 12 teams.

Oklahoma (11-11, 8-8) won three straight games before a recent 83-79 loss to TCU.

Both teams go into Sunday’s matchup playing solid basketball in recent games.

As always, the Wildcats will be looking to feed the ball to star sophomore center Ayoka Lee in the paint.

Lee is averaging 18.8 points per game. At 6-foot-6, she will have a size advantage over Oklahoma’s defenders. If Lee can avoid foul trouble to stay on the court, she would be able to lead the Wildcats offensively and provide a dominant force in the paint.

Junior guard Christianna Carr is feeling her shot right now. Carr has produced offensively for the Wildcats in the past two games. She scored 31 points against TCU and 15 points against West Virginia.

If Carr is able to keep her production going along with Lee’s paint presence, that will be a major factor against the Sooners.

K-State will need to play well defensively. The Wildcats allowed at least 72 points in their last four games. Holding Oklahoma to below 70 points will be a big help. The Sooners scored 79 and 88 points in their last two games. So, the Wildcats’ defense and the Sooners’ offense might make for an interesting matchup.

This should result in a closely contested match-up before the Wildcats head into the Big 12 Tournament.

My prediction: K-State 66, Oklahoma 60. With Lee having a dominant size advantage in the paint, she will be too much for Oklahoma too handle. With Carr also scoring in double figures, the Wildcats will be tough to stop offensively. K-State has the potential to slow down the Sooners on offense.