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Kansas State Collegian

Kansas State Collegian

The independent student news publication at Kansas State University

Kansas State Collegian

Know Your Opponent: Wildcats see another challenge with Longhorns

Women’s basketball looks to bounce back after Oklahoma loss
Forward+Eliza+Maupin+jumps+against+the+BYU+defense+to+score.+The+Wildcats+beat+the+Cougars+on+Jan.+27+67-65+at+Bramlage+Coliseum.
Avery Johnson
Forward Eliza Maupin jumps against the BYU defense to score. The Wildcats beat the Cougars on Jan. 27 67-65 at Bramlage Coliseum.
No. 2 K-State 20-2 (9-1)

Kansas State finally dropped a game without center Ayoka Lee on the court. The Wildcats battled with Oklahoma, but ultimately continued to struggle without their star. Offensive efficiency and interior defense are the team’s weaknesses, which showed against the Sooners. The Wildcats tied their season low of 36.1% from the field shooting and struggled to guard post player Skylar Vann at the end of the game. K-State must search for further ways to fill the hole on the court until Lee returns.

No. 12 Texas 20-3 (7-3)

The Texas Longhorns have steadily stayed near the top 10 all season. Even suffering defeats against K-State and Oklahoma, the Longhorns still remain inside the top 10 for offensive scoring in the country. The season witnessed a plethora of injuries, with only one of their top five scorers — all over 10 points per game — playing in every contest. Even with three losses under their belt — all in Big 12 play — Texas cannot be counted out at any moment to take down anyone.

Matchup to Watch: Taylor Jones vs. struggling Wildcat interior

Interior play was a huge issue for K-State in the past few games. Oklahoma’s Vann and BYU forward Lauren Gustin both gave K-State issues. The Wildcats haven’t completely lost the battle, but have failed to stop low-post scoring and had to intensely battle for rebounds. To defeat No. 12 Texas, the post play must improve against the Longhorns’ height.

Standing at 6-foot-4, Texas forward Taylor Jones is another bad matchup for K-State. Jones was a non-factor against K-State in their first matchup, shooting 1-for-7 in the Wildcat 61-58 victory — although that involved Lee’s dominant presence down low. The senior is averaging over 13 points and seven rebounds and found success outside of playing K-State. Most recently, Jones scored 18 points and snagged 14 boards in a 10-point win against Oklahoma State and blocked seven shots against Cincinnati. A performance like either of those against the Wildcats could all but guarantee a Texas victory.

Key Players

K-State

Forward Gisela Sanchez

Guard Gabby Gregory

Texas

Forward Taylor Jones

Forward Madison Booker

Prediction: Texas 68-60

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About the Contributors
Luke Lazarczyk, sports writer
Sports editor for 2023-24. Previously sports editor for 2022-23 and writer for 2021-22.
Avery Johnson, multimedia editor
Multimedia editor for 2023-24. Previously photographer for spring 2023.
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