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Sunday, January 11, 2009

Wildcats wallop Jayhawks

Kansas guard Katie Smith (middle) can't stand to watch while teammates Ivana Catic (left) and Kelly Kohn look on as Kansas State extends their lead over the Jayhawks in the second half of the game Saturday night in Manhattan, Kan.

Kansas guard Katie Smith (middle) can't stand to watch while teammates Ivana Catic (left) and Kelly Kohn look on as Kansas State extends their lead over the Jayhawks in the second half of the game Saturday night in Manhattan, Kan.

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Wildcats rip KU women

The Kansas State women soundly defeated KU on Saturday.

— As far as Kansas University women’s basketball coach Bonnie Henrickson was concerned, there wasn’t too much to say Saturday night after her team’s matchup with rival Kansas State.

Not after her team, carrying an 11-2 record and a good dose of confidence into Bramlage Coliseum, had been thoroughly dismantled, 72-39, by the 20th-ranked Wildcats. Not after watching 40 minutes of basketball that, she openly admitted, made her sick to her stomach.

“I’ll tell you like I told the kids,” Henrickson said in the moments after the game. “If you got nothing nice to say, don’t say anything. My mom taught me that a long time ago.”

That her team lost in Manhattan wasn’t necessarily what turned the stomach of the Kansas coach — despite closing the gap on the Wildcats over the course of the past two seasons, the Jayhawks still entered the game as underdogs.

It was the way KU lost that proved most unsettling.

By the 10-minute mark of the first half, there wasn’t much question about which team had shown up to play.

Taking advantage of 11 first-half Kansas turnovers, the Wildcats closed the first half on a 15-4 run that put KU in a 39-21 hole going into intermission. They then put together an equally demoralizing 15-4 run midway through the second half to move the game into blowout territory.

K-State senior guard Shalee Lehning, having already set the Big 12 record for triple-doubles in a career with four, flirted with another Saturday, scoring 14 points, dishing out 10 assists and grabbing six rebounds to lead the Wildcats.

On multiple occasions, defensive breakdowns on the part of Kansas allowed Lehning to penetrate and either get to the basket or kick the ball to the perimeter, where K-State was 5-of-12 from three-point range.

“They’re just the type of team that the one time you screw up that switch, they’re going to hit the three; the one time you don’t read the screen right, they’re going to hit that three,” Kansas forward Nicollette Smith said. “That’s what killed us, because whenever we made those small mistakes, they killed us every time.”

Even the Jayhawks’ strong points fell by the wayside Saturday.

One game after scoring her 1,000th career point in a 20-point victory over Fairfield, junior guard/forward Danielle McCray had her worst performance of the season, going just 2-of-12 from the field and finishing with a season-low seven points.

And despite entering the game shooting a Big 12-best 42-percent from three-point range, the Jayhawks struggled to a 1-for-7 performance from beyond the arc against the Wildcats, a setback McCray credited mostly to her team’s lack of execution.

“It was more ourselves rather than their defense,” said McCray. “We just didn’t have that offensive presence.”

Now, the question is whether the Jayhawks — set to take on rival Missouri on Wednesday at Allen Fieldhouse — can bounce back from such a demoralizing defeat.

On the surface, the Jayhawks are still an 11-3 team with all of its preseason goals still intact. But Saturday’s loss no doubt had an unpleasant psychological effect, one that Henrickson said her team can’t allow to fester.

“We’ve got to learn from it and let it go,” the coach said somberly. “Not, ‘It’s OK’ let it go. But not let it eat at you and suck the life out of you.”

Comments

Brad Avery 11 years, 2 months ago

Gee, Bonnie. Tough loss. I am sure it had nothing to do with your recruiting philosophy, but do you remember a girl you didn't recruit at Washburn Rural in Topeka, LaSharra Riley, the 6-3 post player who is going to Oklahoma State? No? Never heard of her? Well, anyway she scored 26 points and grabbed 22 rebounds last night, after a game Friday night where she scored 37. Just thought you would want to know. Meanwhile your ole' buddy, Deb Patterson, is winning Big 12 titles and unfortunately beating your teams rather handedly with Sweat, Lehning, Gipson and Nelson. Best of luck.

osagefire209 11 years, 2 months ago

So I wasted a trip to manhattan last night, I am very upset with the womens program. Four of the five starters for kstate are from kansas. So why can't Bonnie recruit any of these top notch player from instate. Kansas could not take the ball inside and score, seem like every time ku took the ball inside we end up screwing the play up. Kstate made it look it so easy last night, thats all they where doing was taking the ball inside and scoring on ku. I thought I believed in Bonnie Ball but its getting close to move on and find another coach.

Bob Strawn 11 years, 2 months ago

osagefire, are you really lew perkins. why did you leave early? inquiring minds want to know, mr. perkins.

WBBLover2010 11 years, 2 months ago

it doesn't matter where your players are from, as long as they are good. if we had 7,000 people at our games then we might be playing just like them. so instead of talking bad about the women, come out and support them one night before you talk about them please. and fyi, bonnie is not in charge of recruiting her assistants do that.thank you very much.

Phillbert 11 years, 2 months ago

I love how virtually nobody had commented on any of the 11 stories that were published after KU's wins, but one conference loss and suddenly all the basketball geniuses think it is time to fire the coaching staff (which would automatically start the rebuilding clock over, I might add.) Yeah, it was a bad loss to an undefeated team, but it was just one game.

FlaHawk 11 years, 2 months ago

One game in Big XII play. This is a broken record. Glittering non-conference record and then 5-11 or worse in Big XII play. This team is soft and Coach Bonnie recuits these ladies and then they don't imporve (except McCray). Guess where McCray is from >>........ Johnson County,Kansas.Coach Bonnie still has not gotten it after 5 seasons. At more than $500K a year the wins (especially Big XII wins) are getting pretty expensive. The team appears to be marginal better than 3-5 years ago. Not enough progress to get out of the bottom third of conference.Lew need to pull the trigger and go another dirrection if Coach Bonnie can not go 6-10 or better in Big XII. This is NOT asking for much, but may well be beyond this teams abilities!

Omegatron 11 years, 2 months ago

Definitely think that the coaching staff should do a better job recruiting instate. That being said, the girl's on the current roster are jayhawks and I will support them all the way...

namder 11 years, 2 months ago

Look! What kind of excuse is that saying that Bonnie is not in charge of recruiting. She's getting paid the big bucks and the buck stops with her. She's the one responsible in the end . Things better start improving with her program and that means some meaningful wins in the conference. Patsy wins in the non-con then falling on their faces in the big XII is a tune that's worn out.

Bigslick4KU 11 years, 2 months ago

209 there are 3 seniors on Kansas State that put a hurt on KU. If you understand recruiting and can do math, 5 years ago those kids were making up their minds where to go to school. If my old brain is correct Bonnie arrived 5 years ago and this place was a mess from top to bottom. Did all three of those girls not play on the Kansas Belles along with all the other kids that went to Kansas State before them? So in the summer of when Bonnie arrived she was going to break the ties that KSU had rooted with the Belles? I'm sure they were just sitting around their junior years never went to KSU to watch a game, they were waiting around to see who KU was going to hire? Show some logic.Since those 3 there are only 2 Kansas kids that I can see that were top caliber kids. I don't tell about the others on KSU, Lenning makes those kids look great, period. McCray and she is at Kansas and Spani and she is going to Tennessee.Bonnie has a freshman transfer closer to home after tearing acl, who played point guard last year and did well in Big 12 play if I remember reading and listening correctly. Then she signs a High All-American Point Guard who tears her acl at the start of the season who people just raved about after Late Nite. I don't know many schools that carry 3 points guards that would be of the quality to carry a team in the Big 12. Especially a team that is trying to build, not rebuild. Anyway I just an old timer that never posts, but reads and listens online and knows enough that without a point guard it's hard to win games and you guys people just act like Bonnie has done nothing. Good Luck Ladies!!!!

LeBo 11 years, 2 months ago

Where is Lynette Woodard? Bon-Bon balls is easy to devour. They have a strong exterior--but it is just milk chocolate. The post players cannot even receive an entry pass. The only post player that they have with true toughness is Sutherland. Catic is no threat to the defense. She can handle the ball, but she couldn't hit an open jumpshot. Boogard showed some flashes, but is not very strong. N. Smith is okay, yet she thinks that she is a shooting guard not a post player. All the teams have to do is double McCray and hope the Boogard is butterfingers--game, set, match.

Bigslick4KU 11 years, 2 months ago

I'm pretty sure all I stated were facts! But wait your right they should just wrap up Goodrich's knee and make her play,

Dirk Medema 11 years, 2 months ago

The whining on here really shouldn't be a surprise to anyone. It has been going on for years. And the BS about no improvement is just methane off a landfill of garbage. I seem to recall last year's team being on the bubble for the tourney, but I don't get to follow the ladies very closely from the WC/SF,CA.Thanks for the insight Bigslick. I knew that this year's team lost the HS AA before the season began, but didn't realize that overall it was 3. Let's see, how would the guys be doing without Sherron, Tyshawn and Brady. Eeew, that is an ugly thought. Too bad we didn't get the girl from Topeka (sounds like a song), who sounds like she is having a great season. I wonder what the other issues are. So much goes on behind the scenes that we never know about, tho we're bound to post as if we are all-knowingLast I looked, BigXII WBB was sic. Aren't the majority of the teams ranked? Opening conf play on the road is tough, but one bad loss will not ruin an entire season. Fortunately, Lew is smart enough to realize that there have been improvements.Good luck ladies. Hope you too can bounce back from an ugly road loss, and hopefully there will be lots of enthusiastic fans at the game to cheer you on (instead of jeer on you away from the game).Rock Chalk

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