K-State Slate, 11/18/08

We're well past due for a roundup of what's going on with the other sports teams at K-State, so that's exactly what we'll do in this post.  I want to note before I start, however, that today marks the ninth anniversary of the Texas A&M Bonfire Tragedy.  My thoughts are with the families of the 12 Aggies who died that day.

Onward to K-State sports...

Volleyball: With three regular-season matches remaining, Suzie Fritz's Cats are 22-6 (12-5 Big 12) and are ranked 13th in the country.  In the Big 12 standings, the Cats stand third and have clearly separated themselves from the rest of the pack, holding a 3.5 game cushion on Iowa State (8-8).  Two of the Cats' final three matches are with North division foes, ISU and Missouri, before a trip to hapless Texas Tech (0-16).  All three are winnable matches, and three victories would wrap up a very solid 15-5 conference record and a solid NCAA seed.

For those still in or around Manhattan, Senior Night is next Wednesday, November 26th, so get out to Ahearn and support a great senior class that includes Megan Farr, Rita Lilliom, Leslie Townsend, Nataly Korobkova and Jenny Jantsch.  This group has led the way to good seasons the past two years and deserve a proper send-off.

More to come in the next few weeks as NCAA seeds are awarded and postseason play begins.

Women's Basketball: Your defending Big 12 regular-season champions own a 2-0 record on the young season, with both wins on the road.  First up was a trip to beautiful El Paso, Texas, where the Cats dispatched UTEP with ease in a 65-44 victory.  Last night, Deb Patterson and crew traveled to Evanston, Ill., to take on Northwestern, coming away with a 57-52 win.  Next up for K-State is its first home action of the season in Sunday's tilt with Texas-San Antonio.  If you're around, get out to Bramlage and support the women.

Despite low expectations from the media for both men's and women's basketball this winter at K-State, I fully expect both programs to surprise some people this year.  We'll get into more detail about the men's program on Thursday, but the media picked the women to finish seventh in the Big 12.  While losing Kimberly Dietz will undboutedly be a big blow to this team, I have little doubt that Shalee Lehning, Marlies Gipson, Ashley Sweat, Kelsey Nelson and Kari Kincaid will have something to say about that.

Men's Golf: This has the potential to be a monster season for Tim Norris' men's golf team.  Never before have the Wildcats qualified for the NCAA national championship, but this team is playing like a group on a mission.  Since the last update, the Links Cats have won the Pacific Invitational, defeating No. 31 UC Davis in the process.  The team has also placed second in two other invites, the Santa Clara Invitational and the Herb Wimberly Intercollegiate.

Individually, Mitch Gregson and Robert Streb continue to have good seasons.  Gregson won the Santa Clara Invitational, while Streb placed second in the Pacific Invitational.

The Pacific Invitational marked the close of the Links Cats' fall schedule, and the team will return to action in February at Bighorn in Palm Desert, Calif.  Not a bad place to spend a few days in February, eh?  Despite the solid fall results for the Wildcats, Golfweek still has them outside the top 50, albeit barely.  The strength of the fields has been lacking in a few events, most notably the Santa Clara Invitational, but the team will have plenty of chances to test itself during the spring schedule.

Women's Cross Country: Beverly Ramos led the Wildcats to a sixth-place finish at the Midwest Regional and with it on to a berth in the NCAA Championships.  The national championship is tomorrow, November 19th, in Terre Haute, Ind.  Good luck to the women at Nationals!

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