We were simply overmatched tonight. Much like Purdue, although maybe not quite to the same extent, K-State was as big and quicker than us at nearly every position. Unlike Purdue, they didn't play like crap for a half and let us hang around. Once again, we got off to a horrible start, and K-State had us doubled up in the first half at 40-20. Torrance seemed to be pressing a bit in front of his hometown crowd. K-State was more physical than us and simply outworked us. They pretty much shut down our inside game, but we were able to get open looks from the perimeter.
Unfortunately, our 3 point shooting was very poor, and that was the difference in the game. Our press was actually pretty effective, causing 22 turnovers, but we couldn't run it as much as we would like due to our offensive difficulties. Torrance rebounded from a slow start to have a pretty solid game, despite playing with 4 fouls. Green fouling out really hurt us down the stretch. The positive from this game is that we never gave up, despite the fact that the game appeared to be a woefully lost cause at times. There were a couple of possessions where I felt we didn't give the best effort after getting beat on defense, but for the most, our guys kept fighting. We cut the lead to 8 with about 7 minutes left after a rare 5 point play, and got a stop at the other end but turned the ball over immediately when we overthrew the outlet pass. K-State capitalized and went on a 8-0 run to stretch the lead back to 16 and put the game away.
I was disappointed with the crowd. K-State brought a lot of fans and probably had close to 25%. Plus, USA's band for some reason felt the need to support to Kansas State and taunt our players throughout the game. It made me proud that my boy Mike Davis and his squad from the 'ham was able to stick it to them in the first game. Also of note, Gene Bartow sat right beside me between the games. He was surprisingly very nice, and while I was polite and courteous, I also made sure he knows that I did not appreciate his antics with regards to Wimp Sanderson and the NCAA.
Up next, we got our chance for revenge on Mercer Wednesday night at 7pm in Tuscaloosa. Tickets are only 5 bucks, so no reason not to come out.