No. 7/7 Texas Tech started the second half on a 13-1 run to break open a tightly-contested game with Kansas State en route to a 66-47 victory on Saturday night at Bramlage Coliseum.
The victory snapped an eight-game losing streak by the league-leading Red Raiders (21-4, 9-3 Big 12) at Bramlage Coliseum, as they swept the season series for the first time since round-robin play began in 2013.
The Big 12’s top defensive team held K-State (17-8, 6-6 Big 12) to a season-low 47 points on 26.9 percent shooting (13-of-45), including 17.6 percent (3-of-17) from 3-point range, while scoring 18 points off of a season-high 18 Wildcat turnovers. It was the fewest points by K-State since scoring 42 at Baylor on Feb. 21, 2015.
The Wildcats were led by a valiant effort from junior forward Dean Wade, who recorded his fourth career double-double behind 13 points on 4-of-12 shooting from the field and a game-high 11 rebounds. Wade’s double-double was the third he has recorded this season, and the 20th time in his career he has led the Wildcats in scoring. He has now led the team in scoring six times in the last seven games, including five consecutive games.
Redshirt freshman guard Cartier Diarra collected a career-high 7 rebounds, including 6 in the first half, to go with 9 points on 7-of-9 shooting, while sophomore guard Xavier Sneed added 9 points.
Texas Tech was led by senior guard Keenan Evans, who recorded a team-high 19 points on 6-of-12 from the field.
HOW IT HAPPENED
The Wildcats wasted no time to get out on the seventh-ranked Red Raiders, as sophomore forward Xavier Sneed collected a pass from junior guard Barry Brown Jr., on the first possession and buried a 3-pointer from the corner. The opening basket would help the Wildcats to opening 7-0 run over the Red Raiders.
After Texas Tech responded with five points of their own, freshman forward James Love II rejected a drive at the basket, before the Wildcats marched down the floor leading to a Sneed dunk. The opening rally would give Wildcats an early advantage as K-State led 11-5 at the 15-minute mark.
Evans and Texas Tech would respond quickly with a counter of its own.
Following the media timeout, the Red Raiders put together an 8-0 run powered by an Evans’ 3-pointer to give them a 13-11 lead at the 12:51 mark.
After the Evans 3-pointer, the Wildcat defense would respond by holding the Red Raiders scoreless for 4:24 while putting together an 8-0 run to regain the lead. During that span, Texas Tech shot 0-for-6 from the field as K-State gained an 19-13 advantage with 9:44 remaining in the first half.
The Red Raiders would put together another run to regain the lead at 20-19, as the Wildcats were held in check to shoot 0-for-8 from the field, spanning over six minutes of play. During that span, K-State would connect on two free throws to bring the score to 21-20 with 3:36 remaining. In the first half alone, the score changed four times and while the Wildcats possessed the lead for 17 minutes of play.
In the last three minutes of play, Texas Tech would draw the score even at 27-27 to go into the break tied.
K-State would finish the half shooting 30.7 percent on 8-of-26 from the field and 10-of-13 from the free-throw stripe, while Texas Tech shot 42 percent (10-of-24). Wade would lead all scorers with 9 points at the half.
Much like the Wildcats’ run to open the game, the Red Raiders matched with a 7-0 run to open the second half to claim a 34-27 lead.
After pulling out to an early lead to begin the second half, Texas Tech would roll with the scoring as the Red Raiders were able to jump out to a 14-point lead only five minutes into the second half
Trailing 43-32 nearly midway through the second half, Sneed was fed a pass from junior guard Kamau Stokes in transition to bring the score to within single-digits. Due to a foul off the ball during the shot, K-State would retain possession and make the score 43-37 with 11:02 remaining.
However, K-State’s fouls would get them into trouble in the second half, as Texas Tech entered the bonus nearly halfway through the half. The Red Raiders would cash in on the free throws, hitting 9-of-11 from the line in the second half. With the fouls and the turnovers, the Wildcats fell into a slump that allowed the Red Raiders to pull away as they led 53-39 with 7:06 to play.
Texas Tech would retain its lead throughout the remainder of regulation en route to a 66-47 win. K-State shot just 28.9 percent (13-of-45) from the field and were led by Wade, who recorded his fourth-career double-double with 13 points and 11 rebounds.
On the opposing end, Texas Tech connected on 45.7 percent (24-of-53) from the field and 46.7 percent (7-of-15) from beyond the arc.
Listen here to hear from Bruce Weber and the Wildcats after this weekend’s loss to Texas Tech:
Dean Wade and Cartier Diarra