Redbirds Fall to Kansas State in the Second Round of the WNIT, 57-48
March 25, 2013
MANHATTAN, Kan. - Janae Smithled the Redbirds with 19 points, but despite her effort the Illinois State women's basketball team (24-11) fell to Kansas State (17-17) in the second round of the Women's National Invitation Tournament (WNIT) Monday at the Bramlage Coliseum. Smith was 8-of-14 from the field.
Candace Sykes also scored in double figures, scoring 10 points, while Brianna Puni added eight points. Smith, Puni and Jamie Russelleach recorded eight rebounds, while Russell dished out five assists and had four steals. ISU shot 36 percent from the field and had 35 rebounds, as K-State connected on 30 percent of its shot attempts and pulled down 45 rebounds, including 15 on the offensive end.
The two teams traded baskets to start the game, as the Wildcats first four field goals came from beyond the arc. Then, K-State used a 7-2 run to take a 19-12 advantage at the 9:02 mark of the first half. During the run, ISU was held scoreless for over three minutes. K-State's Brittany Chambers scored six-straight points, as the Wildcats went on a 9-0 run to take a 12-point lead, 28-16, with 4:12 to play in the opening half. Smith scored the final five points of the half for the Redbirds, while Chambers netted 14 of K-State's last 17 points of the half.
At the half, Smith led the Redbirds with 11 points, shooting 5-of-7 from the field in the first half, while Puni and Russell each added four points. Smith Puni and Russell each pulled down four boards in the first half, while Russell also dished out four assists. ISU shot 44 percent from the field, while KSU connected on 36 percent of its shots. The Redbirds didn't have a three in the first half, as the Wildcats netted eight. K-State also had the advantage on the boards with 21, with eight coming on the offensive end, while ISU had 17 rebounds at the half.
ISU held KSU scoreless for the first four minutes of the second half, but the Wildcats answered by scoring eight-straight points, 44-26, as the Redbirds still looked to get going offensively. ISU went on a 5-0 run to get within 12 points, 45-33, with 9:59 to play. K-State answered with four-straight points, but a 10-2 Redbird run got ISU within nine, 52-43, with 4:58 to play. In the run, Sykes scored six points, while Smith tallied four.
K-State didn't connect from the field for nearly seven minutes, thanks to strong defensive play by the Redbirds, but a late offensive attack by Illinois State wasn't enough, as it fell to Kansas State, 57-48.