If it hasn’t already been said, it needs to be: Kansas State cannot win on the road during conference play this season. Apart from their start of conference win against TCU in Fort Worth, K-State (18-9, 8-6) has lost every road game. Their loss tonight to Oklahoma (20-7, 9-5) marks their sixth straight loss on the road.
It doesn’t seem to matter how many home victories they manage to acquire, it never provides enough momentum to power the Wildcats through away games. Forget their less than satisfying home win against TCU, the Wildcats already have, and it’s blatantly obvious what happens in Manhattan, stays in Manhattan.
The only teams worse than K-State on the road (1-5) are Texas Tech (2-7) and Oklahoma State (2-6), which currently holds a seven game lose streak.
If any team should get the gold star for most inconsistent, it’s these guys. One moment they’re triumphing over teams like No.7 Kansas and the next, they’re falling to teams like Baylor, by 14 points in double overtime. There is no guarantee except that they’re consistently inconsistent.
The Sooners dominated in almost every way, and not even a game-high, 21 points performance from Marcus Foster could help the Wildcats keep up. Oklahoma gained a 10-7 lead at the 15:53 minute mark in the first half and never let up. The Wildcats were left playing catch up for the remainder of the game.
Sophomore Sooner Buddy Hield managed a team-high 18 points, three rebounds, four assists and three steals, backed by Isaiah Cousins with 17 points, two blocks, two steals and four assists, and Cameron Clark with 11 points and eight rebounds.
It wasn’t bad field shooting that kept K-State down for the remainder of the game; they shot almost identically to Oklahoma from the field at about 50 percent. In fact, they even shot better than Oklahoma from behind the three-point line at 52.6 percent to Oklahoma’s 43.5 percent. No, their trouble came from turnovers and sending the Sooners to the line.
The Wildcats allowed 13 turnovers, 10 of which occurred in the first half. The Sooners quickly took advantage of the fumbling, converting 17 points and outrebounding the Wildcats 21-15 in the first half, 32-28 for the game.
Fouls ate the Wildcats even more than turnovers. K-State fouled 22 times, allowing the Sooners to walk away with 20 points, shooting 76.9 percent from the line. The Wildcats, on the other hand, came out with nine points at 56.3 percent.
The next two weeks look uncertain for the Wildcats.
On Tuesday, they’ll face Texas Tech in Lubbock. If the Wildcats follow the trend they’ve followed all season, it’ll be another road loss. It is likely they will lose to No. 17 Iowa State, however, being back home for their second encounter with the Cyclones might give the Wildcats the slight advantage they needed against Iowa State on the road.
After the Cyclones it’ll be away at Oklahoma State and then home against Baylor. The Wildcats should win both of these, in theory, but the Cowboys atmosphere and their quest to end a seven game losing streak will likely be too much for the Wildcats. If K-State can keep its head in the game, taking down Baylor shouldn’t be a problem.