MANHATTAN, Kan. - Five players reached double figures and Kansas State had its best shooting performance in over two years as the Wildcats advanced to the title game of the 13th annual Commerce Bank Wildcat Classic with a 92-50 victory over Lipcomb on Friday.
Kari Kincaid led all scorers with 14 points on 5-of-9 shooting, including a 4-for-5 mark from three-point range, to send the Wildcats to the championship of the tournament for the 13th-straight year. Ashley Sweat and Jackie Stanley each had 13, while Kimberly Dietz and Marlies Gipson added 12.
Kansas State (3-3) shot 59.3 percent (35-of-59) from the field, its best output since a 59.4-percent effort against Santa Clara on Nov. 26, 2005. The 92 points scored by the Wildcats was the first time K-State topped the 90-point mark since a 94-point outburst against Creighton on Nov. 13, 2006.
Lipsomb (1-7) jumped out to a one-point lead in the first half at 15-14 with a three pointer by Dana Carrigan at the 10:41 mark. However, K-State went on an 18-3 run over the next 7:23 to jump out to a 15-point lead at 32-17, and went on to the locker room with a with a 43-24 advantage at halftime. The Wildcats, who made six of their first seven shots, shot an outstanding 62.1 percent (18-of-29) in the first frame and never looked back.
The second half was more of the same for for K-State as it extended its lead to 23 at 49-26 three mintues into the second frame with a jumper by Kelsey Nelson. Lipscomb fought back and cut the deficit to 17 following two made free throws by Jenna Bartsokas at the 14:43 mark, but the Wildcats went on another strong run, outscoring in the Bisons 30-6 over the next 7:39 to pull out to a 41-point lead at 79-38. The Cats led by as many as 47 at 92-45 in the closing minutes of the game.
Kansas State dominated in almost every category, including points in the paint (46-14), fast-break points (25-3) and bench scoring (45-26).
K-State will matchup with UTEP (4-1) in Saturday’s championship game at 4:30 p.m. The Miners advanced to the championship after dispatching Arkansas-Pine Bluff 73-56 Friday afternoon.
UTEP vs. Arkansas-Pine Bluff: Three UTEP players scored 13 points and two others added nine apiece to lead the Miners over Arkansas-Pine Bluff in the first semifinal matchup of the Commerce Bank Wildcat Classic, 73-56. Timika Williams, Izabela Piekarska and Jareica Hughes led the Miners with 13 points. Piekarska was a force in the paint, leading all players with eight rebounds and four blocks. Kasia Krezel and Natasha Lacy each added nine. UTEP shot nearly 50-percent, going 27-of-57 from the field (47.4 percent).