Thursday’s box score
No. 11 K-State 66, Texas 49
Percentages: FG .340, FT .833. 3-Point Goals: 5-19, .263 (Lewis 3-6, Holmes 1-1, McClellan 1-4, Lammert 0-1, Felix 0-1, Kabongo 0-2, Papapetrou 0-4). Team Rebounds: 2. Blocked Shots: 3 (Ibeh 2, Ridley). Turnovers: 15 (Kabongo 5, McClellan 4, Lammert 2, Holmes, Ridley, Holland). Steals: 4 (Kabongo 2, Papapetrou, Ibeh). Technical Fouls: None.
Percentages: FG .407, FT .619. 3-Point Goals: 9-21, .429 (McGruder 4-8, Rodriguez 3-6, Irving 1-2, Spradling 1-3, Schultz 0-1, Southwell 0-1). Team Rebounds: 3. Blocked Shots: 3 (Southwell 3). Turnovers: 7 (Irving, McGruder, Rodriguez, Williams, Gipson, Southwell). Steals: 9 (Southwell 3, McGruder, Lawrence, Johnson, Spradling, Rodriguez, Irving). Technical Fouls: None.
Att.–NA. Officials–Mike Stuart, Gerry Pollard, Keith Kimble.
Big state, big game
When D.J. Johnson entered the game in the second half, he knew he was in for extending playing time. The freshman forward has playing sparingly all season, but he became the team’s top inside option with Jordan Henriquez fighting an injury and Thomas Gipson in foul trouble.
The Wildcats needed him to hold off Texas, and he knew it. He had never been in that situation before. But he embraced it.
“Just being March, Coach says we should be playing our best ball,” Johnson said. “I think that has everyone excited. We want to play our best ball … I just went out there and helped the team the best way I could.”
Johnson might be looking at more minutes Friday after scoring eight points and grabbing seven rebounds against Texas.
“The guys just told me tonight to keep doing what I’m doing,” Johnson said. “I just want to keep playing hard like I did tonight and keep rebounding.”
Year of the cat
How good of a year has it been for Kansas State’s athletic department? Good enough that the Wildcats rolled out a glossy way to promote it at the Big 12 Tournament.
K-State crammed all of its most recent accomplishments — from the football and basketball teams winning the Big 12 in the same academic year to Erik Kynard winning a silver medal in the Olympics to Collin Klein finishing third in the Heisman Trophy vote to Bruce Weber and Bill Snyder being named conference coaches of the year — into one glossy sheet of paper (front and back) below a catchy header: The Year of the Wildcat.
Henriquez said he felt good following Thursday’s game, but he was clearly fighting back problems. He continually left the court to ride a stationary bike, saying he was trying to stay loose. He was also limited to 10 minutes against Oklahoma State because of injury, but hopes to play more on Friday. “I feel good,” he said. “I just want to keep playing hard.”… K-State players say they are motivated this week by the thought of winning a second championship trophy. “We just came off winning a championship,” Henriquez said. “Coach told us we’ve got two more to go. We want to make a run in the NCAA Tournament, but we have to take care of business this week first.” Added Will Spradling “We want another championship. We got one, but this one would be outright. There is no sharing this one.” … Bill Snyder and his wife were shown on the KissCam in the second half. After some urging from the crowd, Snyder kissed his wife on the cheek to wild applause.
— Kellis Robinett