MANHATTAN, Kan— Intensity, defense and rebounding were nonexistent factors for Kansas State when they visited Ames Jan. 5. The 16th ranked Wildcats made a 180-degree turnaround in all three facets to defeat No. 18 Iowa State 74-52 Tuesday night in Bramlage Coliseum.
In the opening seven minutes of the ballgame K-State (15-3, 6-1) outscored the Cyclones 22-4, forced four turnovers and led 11-2 in rebounding.
In fact, the Cats' were monsters on the boards surpassing the team record of 59 rebounds, set against SE Missouri State last season, by one. The superb performance on the glass was very much a reflection of the quality defense K-State has played in the last two games.
"Our rebounding tonight was definitely a big difference maker," senior Laurie Koehn said. "I don't know if I can remember a game when our team had 60 rebounds. When we defend as a team and we go to the boards like that, we're a tough team to beat."
Kansas State grabbed 26 offensive rebounds which were converted into 23 second chance points, including 15 from 3-point range.
Iowa State (15-2, 5-1) coach Bill Fennelly said his team got out-worked crashing the boards.
"It's pretty simple," Fennelly said. "When you give up 26 offensive rebounds you're going to get beat. We just got our butt kicked on the backboard."
Defensively Kansas State held the Big 12's best scoring offense and most potent 3-point threat to a season-low 31.3 percent from the field and 12 percent from beyond the arc.
The only offensive bright spot for Iowa State came from senior forward Katie Robinette, who had her way in the paint, pacing the Cyclones with 23 points.
Iowa State senior guard Anne O'Neil averaged 17.5 points entering the contest and finished with nine points. Excluding Robinette, the four other starters shot an abysmal 7-for-36 from the floor.
At halftime Iowa State trailed by only 13 points, but was unable to make any sort of run as the Cats' missed their first eight attempts of the second half.
Eventually, K-State found its rhythm again and pushed the lead to 25 after Wecker grabbed an offensive rebound and took it hard into the lane for the basket and the foul.
The victory put Kansas State atop the Big 12 and extended its' home win streak against conference opponents to 22.
The Wildcats and Cyclones spilt the season series for the sixth time and in both games the visitors struggled while the home team thrived.
"It was almost like they lived our experience and we lived theirs," Coach Deb Patterson said. "I thought the quality of defense that was lacking on our part the first match-up, we answered tonight. And that was something that had to happen if we were going to be competitive in this game."
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