Ad Astra Radio Family Brands

Big Second Half Surge Carries K-State to 81-67 win at West Virginia

SHARE NOW

MORGANTOWN, W.Va. (KStateSports.com) – Junior guard Cam Carter scored 15 of his game-high 23 points after halftime to help Kansas State surge to a big second half performance in an 81-67 win over West Virginia on Tuesday night before 10,063 fans at the WVU Coliseum.

BOX SCORE

With the win, the Wildcats (12-3, 2-0) snapped a 4-game losing streak to the Mountaineers (5-10, 0-2 Big 12) in Morgantown, as they earned their first victory at the WVU Coliseum since a 65-51 win on Feb. 18, 2019. It was just the fourth victory (1949, 2013 and 2019) at West Virginia in 13 all-time visits.

K-State has now won 9 of its last 10 games, including the first 2 Big 12 games for the second consecutive season under head coach Jerome Tang. The Wildcats are also off to a 2-0 start in true road games.

Down 42-40 at the half, the Wildcats used a 17-5 run to start the second half to take control of the game and build their first double-digit lead (57-47) with just over 13 minutes to play. Four different players contributed to the run, including a combined 13 points from Carter (7 points) and fellow junior Arthur Kaluma (6 points).

The Mountaineers were able to close to within 5 points on 3 occasions, including 61-56 at the third media timeout with 7:21 remaining, but the Wildcats answered with a decisive 12-2 run to end any notion of a comeback and push ahead by a game-high 15 points (73-58) with 3:43 to play. Carter was responsible for 6 of the 12 points during the run.

WVU got no closer than 8 points the rest of the way in dropping its fifth game in the last 6 outings.

After allowing 42 points in the first half on 48 percent (12-of-25) shooting, including 50 percent (6-of-12) from 3-point range, K-State held West Virginia to just 25 points in the second half on 30.8 percent (8-of-26) shooting, including 18.2 percent (2-of-11) from long range.

Carter led four Wildcats in double figures with his fourth 20-point game of the season, as he finished the game 6-of-14 from the field and a perfect 10-of-10 from the free throw line. Kaluma and senior David N’Guessan each added 17 points, as N’Guessan tallied both his season-high and Big 12 high in going 7-of-8 from the field and 3-of-3 from the free throw line. Senior Will McNair Jr. nearly tallied a double-double with 12 points and a season-high 9 rebounds.

In addition to the four double-digit scorers, the Wildcats got another solid night from redshirt freshman guard Dorian Finister, who tied his season-high with 6 points on 3-of-4 shooting with 2 rebounds, 2 assists and a steal in a career-tying 22 minutes of action.
K-State shot better than 50 percent from the field for the third time this season, connecting on 53.8 percent (28-of-52) of its field goals with 44 of its 81 points coming in the paint. Although both teams turned it over 13 times, the Wildcats were able to post a 17-5 advantage in points off turnovers.

K-State also continued its dominance on the glass, out-rebounding WVU, 35-22, including 9 offensive rebounds which led to 11 second-chance points. The team, which ranks in the top-40 nationally in rebounding, has outrebounded 11 of 15 opponents.

West Virginia was held to just 39.2 percent (20-of-51) shooting, including 30.8 percent (8-of-26) in the second half. The Mountaineers had 3 players score in double figures led by senior transfer RaeQuan Battle, who finished with 21 points on 5-of-13 field goals and 9-of-12 free throws. Senior transfers Noah Farrakhan and Kerr Kriissa each added 11 points.

WVU still leads the all-time series, 16-11, including 15-10 in the Big 12 era. The victory was just the fourth all-time by K-State in Morgantown, following wins in 1949, 2013 and 2019.

HOW IT HAPPENED
The teams went back and forth in the early going, as K-State scored on consecutive baskets from senior Will McNair Jr. and redshirt freshman Dorian Finister to take a 10-7 lead into the first media timeout at the 15:26 mark. The Wildcats pushed their lead to 16-11 on a second dunk by Finister and a layup by senior David N’Guessan.

West Virginia closed the deficit to 19-17 behind the play of senior transfer RaeQwan Battle, who was responsible for 12 of the team’s first 17 points. K-State responded with 9 of the next 13 points, which was highlighted by a 3-pointer from junior Arthur Kaluma, to push back ahead 28-21 with 8 minutes left in the half. The Mountaineers slowly chipped away at the deficit, using a 10-2 run to take their first lead at 31-30 on a 3-pointer by transfer senior Kerr Kriisa.

K-State followed with 9 of the next 13 points to push ahead at 39-35 before the final media timeout at the 3:30 mark. However, WVU finished the half by scoring 6 of the final 7 points, capped by a 3-pointer from junior Kobe Johnson, to take a 42-40 lead at the break.

K-State connected on 60 percent (15-of-25) from the field in the first half, including 33.3 percent (2-of-6) from 3-point range, while WVU shot 48 percent (12-of-25), including 50 percent (6-of-12) from long range. Battle led all scorers with 18 points while N’Guessan paced the Wildcats with 11 points.

K-State came out of the halftime break on fire, scoring 12 of the first 15 points to take a 52-45 lead into the first media timeout at the 15:48 mark. Kaluma had a pair of 3-pointers in the run, while Finister had a dunk and McNair and junior Cam Carter each had layups. After a pair of free throws by the Mountaineers, Carter added a 3-pointer and 2 free throws to give the Wildcats their first double-digit lead at 57-47 with 13:17 to play.

Down double digits, WVU scored 7 of the next 9 points to close the deficit to 59-54, but a layup by McNair sparked a 14-4 run by K-State that extended the lead to 73-58 at the final media timeout at the 3:43 mark. Four different Wildcats contributed to the run, including 6 points from Carter.

The Mountaineers made one last run, rattling off 7 in a row to close to within 73-65 with 1:33 remaining, but the Wildcats finished it off by scoring 8 of the last 10 points for the 14-point victory. Kaluma and N’Guessan scored 4 points each in the game-ending run.

HEAD COACH JEROME TANG
On the game…
“First of all, just very thankful for these young men and our whole team and just how we approached this game. I want to thank (Wichita Eagle beat writer) Kellis Robinett for not making the trip. We are 2-0 when he doesn’t come on road games, so thanks to Kellis. I appreciate the tweet. This is league is incredible, so anytime you can get a win especially on the road, you’re just super thankful. Now you try to figure out how to keep getting better as you go forward.”

On the road win providing confidence to the team…
“Well, we went to LSU and won and there were some pretty tough circumstances going into that one and we were able to figure it out. In know that we can win on the road, tough teams win on the road. It’s just some nights, it doesn’t matter. Like the other team is just better than you are. So, when you’re able to get them to work out. It’s great. And then we go back to the drawing board.”

On the points in the paint…
“It was great to score 44 points in the paint tonight. Obviously, West Virginia is dealing with size issues without Jesse Edwards. That’s something that’s been part of our game plan, to be inside out. You know, when the ball gets into the paint, good things happen.”

On holding RaeQwan Battle to 3 points in the second half…
“I think his first half explosion, it catches you off guard. His athleticism, his quickness, his ability to stop and go straight up in the air. That’s tough to go against. I mean, he shot eight, nine free throws in the first half because we fouled him shooting three pointers. There are not a lot of guys who can come off a screen that hard, plant and go straight up in the air. And so, the second half, we tried to limit our fouls on him and that’s really what really helped us.”

TEAM NOTES

  • K-State moved to 2-0 in Big 12 play with an 81-67 win at West Virginia.
  • K-State snapped a 4-game losing streak to West Virginia at the WVU Coliseum, earning just its fourth victory in Morgantown and third in the Big 12 era… It was the first victory at the WVU Coliseum since a 65-51 win on Feb. 18, 2019.
  • The 81 points tied for the most points against WVU on the road in the series, while the 14-point margin of victory tied for the most in the 13 career games in Morgantown.
  • K-State is 2-0 in Big 12 play for the second consecutive season.
  • West Virginia still leads the all-time series, 16-11, including 15-9 in the Big 12 era… The Mountaineers still own a 9-4 advantage at home.
  • K-State scored its 81 points on 53.8 percent (28-of-52) shooting, including 31.6 percent (6-of-19) from 3-point range, while the Wildcats hit on 82.6 percent (19-of-23) from the free throw line.
  • K-State scored 44 of its 81 points in the paint, holding a 44-22 edge in the category.
  • K-State held a 35-22 advantage in rebounding, including 9 offensive rebounds that led to 11 second-chance points… The Wildcats have now won the rebounding battle in 11 of 15 games.
  • K-State held the advantage in points off turnovers (17-5), points in the paint (44-22), second-chance points (11-4) and fast-break points (13-8).
  • K-State started a lineup of senior Tylor Perry, junior Cam Carter, junior Arthur Kaluma and senior David N’Guessan and senior Will McNair Jr. … It marked the 11th time using this lineup… Carter has now started all 51 games in his K-State career… Carter, N’Guessan and Perry have started all 15 games… Kaluma and McNair earned their 13th starts, respectively.

PLAYER NOTES

  • Four players scored in double figures led by a game-high 23 points from junior Cam Carter.
  • K-State is now 10-1 this season when 4 or more players score in double figures.
  • Carter was joined in double figures by juniors Arthur Kaluma (17 points) and David N’Guessan (17 points) and senior Will McNair Jr. (12 points).
  • Carter scored his 23 points on 6-of-14 field goals and a perfect 10-of-10 performance from the free throw line to go with 4 assists, 3 rebounds and 2 steals in 37 minutes… It marked his fourth career 20-point game, all coming this season… He has now scored in double figures in 23 career games, including 13 times this season.
  • N’Guessan scored a season-high 17 points on 7-of-8 field goals and 3-of-3 free throws to go with 7 rebounds, 2 blocked shots, an assist and a steal in 27 minutes… It was also the most points he has scored in a Big 12 game… He has now scored in double figures in 18 career games, including 7 times this season (which equals his entire total from 2022-23).
  • Kaluma scored his 17 points on 6-of-9 field goals, including 4-of-6 from 3-point range, and 1-of-2 free throws to go with 3 rebounds, 2 assists and a steal in 28 minutes… He has now scored in double figures in 52 career games, including 12 this season.
  • McNair scored his 12 points on 5-of-5 field goals and 2-of-4 free throws to go with a game-high and season-best 9 rebounds and 2 steals in 29 minutes… He has now scored in double figures in 20 career games, including 6 times this season.
  • Redshirt freshman Dorian Finister continued to be a spark from the bench with a season-tying 6 points on 3-of-4 field goals (all dunks) to go with 2 rebounds, 2 assists and a steal in a career-tying 22 minutes.

UP NEXT
K-State concludes its 2-game road trip with a visit to Lubbock, Texas on Saturday afternoon, to take on Texas Tech (13-2, 2-0 Big 12) at the United Supermarket Arena. The game will tip at 3 p.m., CT on ESPN2. The Wildcats will look to snap a 9-game road losing streak to the Red Raiders.

https://www.1861club.com/