Kansas State 79, TCU 68

The Sports Xchange
The SportsXchange

MANHATTAN, Kan. -- No. 9 Kansas State withstood a test from Texas Christian to hold onto a share of first place in the Big 12 Conference with a 79-68 victory at Bramlage Coliseum.
Kyan Anderson kept TCU (1-16, 10-20) in the contest, scoring 14 of his game-high 29 points in the second half. Every time K-State pulled away, Anderson answered.
But it was not enough as the Wildcats finally pulled away with an 11-2 run. Five different Wildcats scored in double-figures, led by Angel Rodriguez with 21 points. Shane Southwell and Martavious Irving added 15 each. Rodney McGruder had 13 and Thomas Gipson had 11, including nine points in the second half as the Wildcats pulled away.
The Wildcats (25-5, 14-3) are tied with Kansas with one game remaining for each team. K-State travels to Oklahoma State Saturday, while Kansas is at Baylor. Kansas State has not won a conference championship since 1977 when they played in the Big 8.
TCU came out quickly in the second half, going on an 8-0 spurt to start the half. The Horned Frogs got the lead inside single digits for the first time since it was 20-11 at the 10:50 mark of the first half. They got as close as 4 points midway through the second half, but could get no closer.
The Wildcats certainly were generous, getting 27 assists on their 31 made baskets, including 17 of 17 in the first half.
The Wildcats left little doubt in the first half that they wanted to keep alive their shot at the Big 12 championship. They pulled out to a 17-5 lead and never were tested. Even a TCU 6-0 run, all by Kyan Anderson, did little but add some annoyance for the crowd ready to celebrate their senior class.
A quick 7-0 answer by K-State, capped by a one-handed slam by Rodney McGruder had the Wildcats back up 24-11 and had fans back on their feet. The Wildcats coasted for the rest of the half, matching their largest lead of the game at the half, 42-27.
K-State had a balanced attack in the first half, led by Shane Southwell with 15 points. Angel Rodriguez and McGruder added 8 points each.
Anderson was the only factor for TCU. He scored 12 of his squad's first 14 points and finished the half with 15.
NOTES: TCU already had clinched the 10th seed in the Big 12 tournament next week in Kansas City before tonight's loss. ... K-State's three-man senior class of Rodney McGruder, Jordan Henriquez and Martavious Irving will graduate as the winningest senior class in school history with 99 victories. ... K-State finished the season with a 10-0 record against teams from the state of Texas. Besides sweeping Texas, Texas Tech, Baylor and now TCU, the Wildcats defeated non-conference opponents Lamar and Texas Southern.

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