No. 16 Iowa State ended its three game losing streak Saturday by taking down No. 22 Kansas State 81-75.
The majority of the game was all Cyclones but K-State stormed back from being down 46-34 at halftime to tie the game at 50 with over 13 minutes left to play.
Melvin Ejim was the top performer for Iowa State as he led his team with an impressive stat line of 20 points, 9 rebounds, 2 assists, 3 steals and 3 blocks. Ejim was critical in the game’s final minute as well as he blocked a three-point attempt by K-State’s Shane Southwell that could have tied the game up. He also proceeded to sink two free throws to ice the game and give Iowa State its first Big 12 win since Jan. 7 against Baylor.
Kansas State came into the game after losing a buzzer beater to Texas on Tuesday and while this game was not as dramatic it was definitely a disappointment for the team after they were able to battle back from a slow first half but still fall short in the end.
“We had our opportunities. Again, we battled. They’re a good team. We knew it would be tough to win here after they had lost three in a row,” Kansas State coach Bruce Weber said.
The Wildcats’ star freshman Marcus Foster was key to getting back in the game as he contributed 20 points, 5 rebounds, 3 assists and 2 steals. Senior Will Spradling also was a big help as he hit three consecutive three-pointers during his team’s comeback. He finished with 12 points on the day.
Tuesday, Kansas State will have a chance to get back into the win column with Texas Tech coming to Manhattan. The Red Raiders are currently 10-9 overall and 2-4 in the Big 12.
Iowa State will look to survive their next three games and climb back up the AP polls as they face No. 8 Kansas on Wednesday followed by No. 25 Oklahoma on Feb. 1 and No. 11 Oklahoma State on Feb. 3.