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All wrong in the end

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Kansas State lost to West Virginia in the worst possible way

Big 12 Basketball Tournament - Quartefinals Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images

Men’s Basketball

You know that expression? All’s well that ends well? Well, the end of yesterday’s Kansas State game against West Virginia was the opposite of that.

The Wildcats lost the game 51-50 on a botched final play that was basically a microcosm of the entire season. A delay getting to the floor, a delay in calling a timeout, two screens that never hit against a fantastic defensive adjustment by the ‘Eers, and it was all over. The Kansas City Star’s Sam Mellinger tells the story better though, so definitely read his piece.

To be fair, the game may have been lost before the final seconds. As JT VanGilder notes in his game recap, this was a defensive slugfest. The Wildcats held West Virginia to just 16 points in the first half and just 26.7 percent shooting from the field. But in the second half, the ‘Eers turned the tables on the Wildcats, scoring 24 of the last 35 points in the contest and holding Kansas State to just three field goals in the final nine minutes.

In the end, unable to respond to West Virginia’s defensive adjustments and unable to shoot efficiently, the Wildcats just didn’t have enough. That’s the 2016-17 season in a nutshell.

All that’s left now is to wait and see where fate will take this team.

Baseball

The BatCats hot streak finally game to an end against UC Riverside in the first game of a Friday doubleheader. Over the last five home games, Kansas State had averaged over 15 runs a game, but only managed one run against the Highlanders in the first game, dropping the contest 5-1. Quintin Crandall had the BatCat’s lone run off a single from Josh Ethier.

In the second game, Kansas State only needed a single run. This time, Kyle Barfield scored off a double from Cameron Thompson in the bottom of the eighth inning. Closer Jordan Floyd then came in to save the game. He now leads the conference in saves.

Starting pitcher Brogan Heinen finally had a decent game, pitching a shutout through six inning while striking out five batters and only allowing two hits with no extra base hits. Mitch Zubradt, pitching in relief, kept the hitless streak going and was credited with the win.

The team is off today, but the series with UC Riverside concludes with tomorrow’s game at Tointon. First pitch is scheduled for 1 PM.

Track and Field

At the NCAA Indoor Championships in College Station, two Kansas State women posted strong numbers on Day 1, giving Cliff Rovelto reason to believe the women’s team will finish in the Top 10 for the fourth consecutive year.

Freshman Nina Schultz finished third in the pentathlon, setting a new under-20 Canadian record in the process with 4,340 points. She had set the previous record earlier this year in Lincoln, Nebraska. For her efforts, Schultz will be a first-team All American for the first time, only the third Wildcat freshman to ever merit such an honor, after compatriot Alyx Treasure and distance runner Amy Mortimer.

Meanwhile, Kim Williamson finished seventh in the high jump, good enough for a first-team All America nod. However, for the Kansas State senior, this was a bit of a disappointment. She is the reigning Big 12 and NCAA outdoor champion in the event, and Rovelto thinks that she may be struggling with her mechanics a little bit.

Kansas State athletes will be back in action later today around 3:30 PM CT.

Tennis

Kansas State ended its two-match losing streak by sweeping Omaha 7-0, but then dropped the second contest in the doubleheader, losing 4-0 to Texas Tech to begin Big 12 play in a 0-1 hole.

Against Omaha, the Wildcats got a much-needed confidence boost, winning every match in straight sets. Particularly impressive was Carolina Costamagna’s 6-0, 6-1 win at the No. 1 singles spot.

The contest against the Red Raiders was a different story, however. Costamagna lost a closely contested match 6-4, 6-2 and Millie Stretton was no match for Felicity Maltby and lost her match 6-2, 6-1.

Kansas State is back in action against TCU tomorrow. Match play begins at 11 AM.

Miscellany

Don’t forget to move your clocks forward tonight! Daylight savings begins March 12 at 2:00 AM and will end on November 5 at 2:00 AM.