Sloppy K-State puts North Dakota away in second half

Kansas State isn’t going to beat many Big 12 teams playing the way it did Tuesday night. But against North Dakota, it didn’t matter enough to result in an ugly loss to kick off the holiday season. The Wildcats overcame turnovers and inconsistent shooting to top the Fighting Hawks, 63-49, at Bramlage Coliseum. “You have to give them some credit,” K-State coach Bruce Weber said. “They spread us out and we didn’t attack it very well.” K-State struggled to sustain any success offensively early on. The Wildcats had a scoreless stretch of more than six minutes against UND, who was missing two of its top players. The Wildcats made just nine field goals while turning the ball over 13 times in the first 20 minutes, and led 24-21 at halftime. “We played like we practiced, to be honest,” Weber said. “North Dakota came to win, and we didn’t handle it very well at times.” Early in the second half, Kamau Stokes and Justin Edwards fueled a run that gave K-State the lead for good and provided a level of energy the team lacked to start the game. Stokes made a pair of threes sandwiched around one from Edwards. The Wildcats made 5-of-12 from long range in the second half after making just two of their first 12. UND refused to go away, staying in the game thanks to timely offensive rebounds and forced turnovers. K-State didn’t lead by more than 11 points until Barry Brown’s three-pointer with 16 seconds left. Brown led the Wildcats with 15 points, including 12 in the second half. Wesley Iwundu added 11. “Barry saved us in the second half,” Weber said. K-State has had its struggles offensively this season, but it had been consistent at the free throw line until Tuesday. The Wildcats missed 14 of 26 attempts, including a 3-of-10 charity stripe performance from Edwards. The win moved the Wildcats to 9-2 on the season, which matches K-State’s best start under Weber. After a few days with family, the Wildcats will return to Manhattan to prepare for the K-State’s final game before Big 12 play begins. The Wildcats host Saint Louis next Tuesday. – See more at:

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