Second half push propels K-State past Iowa State in bounce back win

(Elizabeth Sandstrom | Collegian Media Group)
Guard Markquis Nowell drives inside against Iowa State in K-State’s 61-55 victory in Bramlage Coliseum. Nowell dropped 20 points on the night, 18 of which were in the second half. (Elizabeth Sandstrom | Collegian Media Group)

Editor’s note: Added video of Markquis Nowell making a basket.

No. 12 Kansas State defeated No. 19 Iowa State in a hard-fought win at home to advance to 20-7 (8-6) in conference standings. 

Play in the first half favored Iowa State as K-State fell behind early, being outscored by Iowa State 31-23. Controlling the backboard played into early success for Iowa State, collecting 21 boards to K-State’s 15.

It was a defensive back and forth for most of the first half. The Cyclones boast a formidable defensive unit, holding the Wildcats to their lowest-scoring conference victory of the season.

Entering the second half, K-State gained more offensive momentum and was able to limit their turnovers to only 11 on the night. K-State was able to close the deficit with five second-half 3-point shots.

Guard Markquis Nowell put up another standout night, scoring 20 points, six rebounds and five assists. Nowell turned it on in the second half, scoring 18 of his 20 points.

Along with Nowell, forward Keyontae Johnson put on a solid performance recording 15 points and six rebounds. Johnson has had problems with foul trouble in the past few games but only committed one personal foul on the night.

Turnover woes plagued Iowa State all night, committing 15 with K-State converting them into 19 points off of turnovers.

For the Wildcats, it was a much-needed win to keep the team’s tournament goals on track, moving to 20 wins on the season. Rebounding still stands as a point of emphasis after losing the battle on the boards 41-32.

K-State will quickly rest up before their next matchup against No. 9 Baylor at 6 p.m. on Tuesday, Feb. 21, at Bramlage Coliseum.