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Cats drop Big 12 tourney game to Iowa State

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Time to gear up for the NCAA Tournament.

NCAA Basketball: Big 12 Conference Tournament-West Virginia vs. Kansas William Purnell-USA TODAY Sports

Basketball

Kansas State lost to Iowa State 63-59 at the Philipps 66 Big 12 Tournament last night. The Cyclones will now take on Kansas in the title game later today.

It was a physical contest, and as Luke Sobba notes, the Wildcats had several chances to put the game away. But on a day when Iowa State’s Marial Shayok could apparently do no wrong, the baskets didn’t quite fall when they needed to for Kansas State.

The Wildcats aren’t particularly healthy, with Dean Wade still missing from the lineup with a foot injury, Cartier Diarra only just returned from a hand injury, and Kamau Stokes battling migraines. Xavier Sneed even asked to leave the game briefly. But the players definitely didn’t want to make any excuses. “Definitely can’t use fatigue as a factor” was how Mike McGuirl put it after the game (Greg Woods, Manhattan Mercury).

I’m going to go ahead and make an excuse though: it’s hard to feel too bad about this loss. For one, Iowa State is finally back to the form that made the Cyclones legitimate Big 12 contenders just a few weeks ago. For another, the loss little to diminish what Kansas State has already done this year. It’s easy to equate this loss to last year’s, but this is also a team that has already made an Elite Eight run and might be poised for another good NCAA Tournament (Vahe Gregorian, Kansas City Star).

Onwards and upwards.

Baseball

Kansas State took the first game 3-1 in this weekend’s home series against UT Rio Grande Valley, pitching four scoreless innings and getting two hits from Cameron Thompson in the process.

The BatCats scored in the second and fourth innings and added a third run, an RBI single from Thomas Hughes in the eighth for the win. Pitcher Griffin Hassall, in his first career start, tossed nearly five innings with seven strikeouts and allowed only one earned run. Pitching in relief, Mitch Zubradt got his team-leading fourth save of the season.

The next game in the series will be today at Tointon Family Stadium at 4 PM.

Tennis

The 33rd-ranked Kansas State team couldn’t quite keep up their recent momentum and lost to No. 30 Oklahoma 5-2 in the Big 12 opener for both squads.

Maria Linares and Karine-Marion Job got the Wildcats’ only points, both in singles. Linares, playing at the No. 2 spot, beat Martina Capurro 7-6 (4), 6-3, whole Job needed three sets to put away Jasmine Asghar 5-7, 6-3, 6-0.

Kansas State has an even tougher match next, as they travel to Stillwater to take on No. 11 Oklahoma State next Sunday.