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Cold shooting dooms Cats vs. Sooners

By The Mercury

NORMAN, Okla. — For the second straight game, a poor shooting half sealed Kansas State’s fate, as Oklahoma eased to a 72-57 win over the Wildcats Wednesday night at the Lloyd Noble Center.

Losers of four straight on the road, the Wildcats (13-13, 4-10 Big 12) were paced by Brittany Chambers and Bri Craig. Chambers finished with 21 points and nine rebounds, while Craig tallied 12 points and eight rebounds. Mariah White had nine points and four rebounds.

With a 3-pointer in the first half, Chambers knocked down the 300th of her career and became the 32nd player in NCAA Division-I history with 300 career 3-pointers made.

Chambers joins former Wildcat, Laurie Koehn (392 – NCAA record), as the second player in Big 12 history and school history with 300 or more career 3-poiners.

K-State becomes the first school in NCAA Division I history with two players with 300 or more career 3-pointers.

Additionally Wednesday, Chambers broke the the school record for miniutes played. She played 40 minutes for the 31st time in her career, giving Chambers 4,306 minutes, passing former Wildcat All-American and current assistant coach Shalee Lehning (4,271).

OU (19-7, 9-5) had three players in double figures, led by Aaryn Ellenberg with 18 points and five assists. Joanna McFarland scored 15 points and hauled down10 rebounds.

K-State started off cold from the field, making just 1of 11, including 0 of 6 from beyond the arc to trail the Sooners 13-6 with 11:34 to play in the first half. The Wildcats trimmed the Sooners’ lead to four at 15-11 when Chambers registered the Wildcats’ first 3-pointer of the night and Craig got a putback.

With three straight 3-pointers and a 13-0 run, Oklahoma increased its lead to 28-11 with less than five minutes remaining in the first half. A pair of late baskets, including a banked in 3-pointer at the halftime buzzer from Craig brought K-State back to within 11 at the half at 32-21.

The Wildcats shot only 21 percent from the field (7-of-34) in the opening half, but held a 23-22 edge on the glass — including 10 offensive boards in the first stanza.

Oklahoma raced out of the locker room at halftime to secure a 40-24 advantage with an 8-2 run in the first two-and-a-half minutes and forcing a K-State timeout. Griffin registered four points during the run to extend the lead.

The Sooners’ lead would balloon to 25 with the aid of a 15-4 run over a six-minute stretch midway through the second half. K-State was able to bring the game back to within 18 with with less than three minutes to play.

For the game, K-State shot 30 percent (20-of-67) from the field, while the Sooners were 53 percent (31-of-59) from the field . The Wildcats outrebounded the Sooners 42-40, but Oklahoma tallied a 34-22 edge in points in the paint.

K-State will return to Bramlage Coliseum on Saturday for its second-to-last regular season home game of the season to host Iowa State at 2 p.m. The game will mark K-State’s participation in the “Play 4Kay” national initiative for breast cancer awareness. The first 4,000 fans will receive a free pink K-State t-shirt and survivors of breast cancer survivors will be honored prior to the end of the first half.

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