Gipson powers Cats past TCU, 65-47

By Joel Jellison

FORT WORTH — The memories Thomas Gipson had of his first trip to TCU weren’t good.

Gipson played 10 minutes and finished with four points in front of a family-filled crowd.

On Tuesday, in the same situation, Gipson thrived.

Associated Press
(Kansas State forward Thomas Gipson shoots against TCU center Karviar Shepherd in the first half Tuesday night in Fort Worth, Texas. The Wildcats won 65-47 to extend their winning streak to 10 games. Gipson finished with a game-high 19 points and eight rebounds).

The junior forward led No. 25 Kansas State with 19 points and eight rebounds and the Wildcats defeated TCU 65-47 to win their their 10th straight game.

“I don’t think we handled him, for the most part,” TCU forward Amric Fields said. “He had his way with us in the zone or the man. Big, strong body — we just had problems with him all night.”

The Wildcats (12-3, 2-0 Big 12) got 11 points from Gipson in the first half to build a 31-21 halftime lead.

As good as Gipson was for the Wildcats in the first half, though, it wasn’t a flawless effort for K-State, which turned the ball over 11 times in the first 20 minutes alone — 18 for the game.

What saved K-State was its ability to control the glass, outrebounding TCU (9-5, 0-2) 21-8 in the first half and 37-21 for the game.

“We just wanted to emphasize our rebounding against them,” Gipson said. “I feel like we did a good job with that.”

Down, but not out, the Horned Frogs made a run at the Wildcats midway through the second half when they used an 8-0 run to cut the deficit to 36-33 with 13:44 to play.

The Wildcats would forge back ahead, though, scoring on a 3-pointer from Shane Southwell and a layup by DJ Johnson to go ahead 45-36.

TCU got within seven points of the lead with 6:03 remaining, but Marcus Foster hit back-to-back 3s and the Wildcats charged ahead 53-42.

“The thing that’s really disappointing to me, with 6 minutes to go it was a relatively close basketball game, and I thought for whatever reason we stopped competing,” TCU coach Trent Johnson said.

K-State coach Bruce Weber was pleased with the win, especially after collecting a key road victory to set up an early conference matchup on Saturday against the rival Jayhawks in Lawrence.

“It was a hard fought game,” he said. “There’s no doubt TCU is better (than last season). We tried to make the kids understand that. The first thing on the board, we got in the Top 25, do you want to stay there?

“From Northern Colorado to now, we’ve made such major improvement. Now, let’s see what we can do and if we can stay there.”

The Horned Frogs’ zone defense pestered the Wildcats much of the night, but it was K-State’s defense that did the most damage. TCU shot just 34 percent from the field, while the Wildcats found ways to attack the Frogs’ zone and shoot a season-high 52 percent.

Johnson said the Wildcats’ defense and rebounding was good, but that he was more upset with his team’s inability to capitalize on K-State’s 18 turnovers, scoring just eight points.

“I don’t want to take anything away from Kansas State, they’re a very efficient basketball team, and obviously they play very hard, and were very efficient in their approach in terms of rebounding the ball,” he said. “But they had 16 assists, 18 turnovers — they gave the ball away 18 times.”

Foster joined Gipson in double figures, finishing with 16 points and four rebounds. The freshman guard was 4 of 6 from behind the arc and 4 of 5 from the free-throw line.

It was the first trip to his homestate for K-State’s dynamic freshman, and he didn’t disappoint.

“You’ve got three Texas kids,” Weber said. “Last year, (Gipson) knows he didn’t play very well here. Sometimes, you get a little overwhelmed and don’t have the right focus… Marcus was kind of a little up and down, and then down the stretch he was good for us.”

Fields led the Horned Frogs with 14 points, while Kyan Anderson finished with 12.

Big week for Marcus Foster

Foster collected another weekly honor on Tuesday, as he was selected as the Wayman Tisdale National Freshman of the Week in helping Kansas State to a pair of wins over George Washington and then-No. 6 Oklahoma State last week.

The Texas native was named the Big 12’s Newcomer of the Week on Monday.

Foster was chosen for the weekly national honor by’s Jeff Borzello in partnership with the U.S. Basketball Writers Association.

Foster averaged 16 points on 52.2 percent shooting (12 of 23) in helping the Wildcats notch RPI Top 25 wins over the Colonials and Cowboys.It was a hard fought game,

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