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Kansas State Collegian

Kansas State Collegian

The independent student news publication at Kansas State University

Kansas State Collegian

Women’s basketball suffers close double OT loss in Lee’s return against Iowa State

Center+Ayoka+Lee+gives+the+bucket+a+look+in+the+Texas+game+on+Jan.+13%2C+2024.+In+her+comeback+game+against+Iowa+State%2C+Lee+dropped+20+points+with+six+rebounds+in+the+96-93+double+overtime+loss.
Carter Schaffer
Center Ayoka Lee gives the bucket a look in the Texas game on Jan. 13, 2024. In her comeback game against Iowa State, Lee dropped 20 points with six rebounds in the 96-93 double overtime loss.

Kansas State women’s basketball finally witnessed the return of star center Ayoka Lee. Even with the needed return, a double-overtime loss at the hands of Iowa State gave the Wildcats its third Big 12 loss.

The Wildcats had a slow start due to a 12-0 run from the Cyclones. A jumper from Lee brought the Wildcats out of its shooting drought, and 3-pointers from forward Gisela Sanchez and guard Taryn Sides helped the Wildcats tighten the scoring gap. 

The end of the quarter consisted of two Cyclone layups, placing the Wildcats behind by seven. 

In a low-scoring second quarter, the Wildcats scored the majority of their points through Cyclone turnovers, with steals from guards Serena Sundell and Brylee Glenn.

Guard Jaelyn Glenn was able to score a layup with 54 seconds left in the first half. Two Cyclone free throws marked the final points of the half, putting the Wildcats down 39-26 at the buzzer. 

The Wildcats turned on the jets in the third quarter. Brylee Glenn scored a 3-pointer to start the quarter followed by a three-point play from Lee off a jumper, getting fouled and making the free throw.

Guard Gabby Gregory was the essential player of the quarter. She got fouled on a made layup and scored the accompanying free throw, and then made a 3-pointer less than a minute afterwards, bringing the score to 44-38. 

The Wildcats continued to push their way to the top, outscoring the Cyclones by nine.

At the buzzer, the Wildcats were back in the game with a 54-50 Cyclones score. 

A jumper from Sides at the start of the fourth places the Wildcats within two points of the Cyclones. Finally, with six minutes to go, Sundell scored a 3-pointer that granted the Wildcats the lead by one point.

For the last minutes of the game, both teams scored back and forth to gain the win. With 52 seconds left, Cyclone guard Addy Brown made a 3 to tie the game 70-70.

The Wildcats gained a two-point lead because of free throws from Brylee Glenn and Lee, but the Cyclones tied the game 72-72 with two free throws of their own, forcing the game into overtime. 

In overtime, the Wildcats and Cyclones continued to battle for the top spot. Free throws were the main mode of scoring, which allowed the Cyclones to surpass the Wildcats by two at 80-78.

At the overtime buzzer, Lee scored a jumper, tying the game 80-80 and necessitating yet another overtime. Throughout the night, Lee battled with Iowa State freshman center Audi Crooks, who finished the night with 20 points and four rebounds against Lee’s 20 points and six rebounds.

The Wildcats failed to hold onto the Cyclones in the second overtime. Although K-State scored a few layups to stay in the game, the Cyclones scored 10 free throws because of multiple Wildcat fouls, including Sundell’s fifth foul to foul out of the game. Ultimately, the Cyclones pulled away from the Wildcats, walking away with a three-point win, 96-93.

This close loss places the Wildcats at a record of 21-4 and No. 2 in Big 12 rankings. They return home to play against UCF at 4 p.m. Saturday.

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About the Contributor
Carter Schaffer, editor-in-chief
EIC for 2023-24. Previously EIC for 2022-23 and writer and photographer for spring 2022.
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