9/22/08 Taber Spani commits to Tennessee
ESPN reported today that Taber, who had narrowed the field to K-State and Tennessee, has volunteered for duty on Pat Summitt's team. I'm surprised. I thought we had a good chance. Deb's a great recruiter. I'm sure she'll look elsewhere and find yet another great Wildcat.
8/28/08 Wecker crosses over to the dark side... joins OU staff
Here's the press release from Norman. While I have great respect for Sherri Coale, it's very naughty of Kendra to coach against the Cats. I'm sure she'll be a tremendous asset to the Okies, but this sort of thing shouldn't happen.
8/09/08 Media sources reporting verbal commitment from Brittany Chambers
Brittany Chambers, a 5' 8" point guard from Jordan, Minnesota, has reportedly made a verbal commitment to Deb Patterson for 2009-10. A Minnesota girls' high school basketball site, gPrep, says, "Brittany Chambers, one of the state's all-time great players verbaled the Kansas State Wildcats... Chambers holds the Minnesota state record for most points scored in a tournament game, 47 points. The 5'8" guard is a great decision maker, running the fast break. She generates easy transition buckets for her team with her excellent floor vision. Chambers is a rare athlete who has the ability to take over a game at any time and against any opponent. Chambers is also an elite volleyball player." Girls Basketball Recruit, a blog from Minnesota, is also confirming the commitment. There's a background story on Brittany in the Minneapolis Star-Tribune.
8/05/08 Cats' 2008 - 09 schedule announced
It doesn't seem that long ago that the Cats won that awesome Big 12 championship, but Sports Information has released the 2008 - 09 schedule. Ticket orders are being processed. Let's all get behind our Cats as they defend their championship!
7/29/08 Olga becomes a U. S. citizen
Everyone should read Joshua Kinder's story in the Manhattan Mercury about Olga Firsova, who became a U. S. citizen on July 25.
7/20/08 Koehn still showing she can play
I'm so happy that NCAA career three-point record holder Laurie Koehn is still gettin' it done with the Washington Mystics. Here's a nice story in today's Hutchinson News to help you catch up. I never admired a K-State athlete, male or female, more than Laurie Koehn. Nobody ever worked harder. I don't know how many times I saw her all alone in a gym, working on her shot.
7/15/08 K-State Women Named to National Honor Roll
Now here's a headline which should come as no surprise to anyone! The WBCA has listed the K-State Women's Basketball team in 2nd place on its National Honor Roll. To quote Sports Information: As a team, K-State registered a 3.652 team GPA and finished second among NCAA Division I schools to South Dakota State, who tallied a 3.669 team GPA. The GPA for the Wildcats is the fourth-highest in the history of the WBCA Academic Top 25 Honor Roll. Outstanding work, Cats!
7/15/08 K-State Leads Academic All-Big 12 Selections / place eight on Big 12 Academic Honor Roll
Now here's a headline which should come as no surprise to anyone! The WBCA has listed the K-State Women's Basketball team in 2nd place on its National Honor Roll. To quote Sports Information: As a team, K-State registered a 3.652 team GPA and finished second among NCAA Division I schools to South Dakota State, who tallied a 3.669 team GPA. The GPA for the Wildcats is the fourth-highest in the history of the WBCA Academic Top 25 Honor Roll. Here's the full press release from K-State Sports Information. K-State athletes named to the first team were: Carolyn McCullough (communication sciences and disorders), Shana Wheeler (special education), Marlies Gipson (elementary education), Shalee Lehning (electronic journalism), Danielle Zanotti (psychology), Kari Kincaid (secondary education) and Ashley Sweat (kinesiology). On the Academic All-Big 12 second team was senior Kimberly Dietz (marketing).
7/01/08 Dani's European diaries
Don't miss Danielle Zanotti's fun, informative and extremely well-written reports from the Czech Republic. You'll have a greater appreciation than ever of the intelligence and ability of the student athletes of the K-State Women's Basketball program.
There's also a photo gallery along with it.
6/26/08 Cats defeat Czech under-18 national team
Ashley Sweat had a big night in the Cats' game vs. the national team, with 20 points. Here's the report from Sports Information. Our Cats are undefeated against all opponents on the European continent!
6/21/08 Cats headed to Europe
I've been around the women's basketball team a fair amount the past two weeks, but didn't know until today that they will leave for Europe on June 23, to play in the Czech Republic and Austria. The full release is on the Sports Information site.
4/18/08 Women's Basketball Banquet Scheduled for May 3
It was announced today by Sports Information that the annual Women's Basketball banquet will be on Saturday, May 3 in the Alumni Center. There is only space for the first 100 fans, who can make reservations by calling 532-6970 or e-mailing Erin Sunde. This is sure to be an upbeat and fun event. My reservation was made on Day One!
4/06/08 Winona Daily News Girls Basketball Player of the year: Jenny Gilbertson
Here's a story from today's Winona Daily News about our newly-signed player, Jenny Gilbertson, a 6' 2" forward. Also, the paper has written a companion story, Competitive nature will help Gilbertson at Kansas State.
4/01/08 No foolin': Kimberly Dietz is an AP All-American!
Dietz was named today an honorable mention AP All-American. Here's a story from the NCAA. Congratulations to our #10 all-time scorer and a great Wildcat! Here's Sports Information's release.
3/29/08 Alina Voronenko: Sharpshooter To Wildcats
Here's a story from Hoopgurlz.com from last October on our 6' 2" recruit from Missouri.
3/26/08 "We had to contain their point guard..."
"We had to contain their point guard," Louisville coach Jeff Walz said of Shalee Lehning. "She was the one, in my opinion, that drives the entire team. I told her after the game that she is the best point that we've played against the entire year and that says a lot because we've played against some great ones."
3/30/08 More links to NCAA tournament stories
3/23/08 Louisville up next for the Cats
The Louisville Cardinals (the fiercest robin-sized birds in all the world) beat the Miami of Ohio Redbirds, 81-67 today, setting themselves up as the Cats' next victims. The game is set for Tuesday, March 25 at 6 P.M. CDT. You can watch it on ESPN2, as long as your cable service is set to the right transponder. (ESPN2 had four games running simultaneously on Sunday.) Here's an updated bracket from our pals at ESPN. Go Cats!
3/23/08 Kelsey Nelson steps up big to defeat Chattanooga
The #16 Cats faced Chattanooga (RV), a team riding high on a 24-game winning streak. Chattanooga hadn't lost since December 1st! Dietz and Zanotti were unfortunately not available, leaving both offense and defense in question. What to do?
While some of our go-to players were contributing, but not having career-best games, Kelsey stepped onto the court and went nuts! She made six field goals, a three, and seven-of-seven free throws for 20 points. Marlies hit 50% from the field, adding 12 points. Shalee hit seven-of-seven from the free throw line, adding 12 points. Kari Kincaid hit a couple of nice threes, ending with 10 points. The Cats, as a team, hit 21 of 21 free throws. Un-be-lievable! How many times has that ever happened... anywhere? The Cats outrebounded, 34-32. Thanks, Cats, for a tremendous victory, and Kelsey, you're the Player of the Game.
Danielle Zanotti... I'm real sorry you hurt your back. I hope you're able to play later in the tournament. We need you, and you deserve it!
3/23/08 Links to NCAA tournament stories
3/19/08 Shalee Lehning named a WBCA/State Farm Region V All-America finalist
Here's the release from the WBCA today.
3/19/08 Coach Patterson named Regional Coach of the Year
Deb has been named the Region V Coach of the Year by the WBCA for guiding the Cats to the 2008 Big 12 championship. Here's the release from K-State Sports Information, and this release is from the WBCA.
3/17/08 Cats back in the NCAA tournament!
It's K-State (21-9) as the #5 seed vs. Chattanooga (29-3) as the #12 seed in the Bridgeport, Connecticut subregional of the New Orleans regional. Here's a link for the NCAA's bracket, and this is the bracket from ESPN. The game will be played on Sunday, March 23 at 11 A.M. CDT. Here's the link for K-State Sports Information's Tournament Central, and the preview on the Women's Basketball page. ESPN2 will carry the game.
3/16/08 Interesting article on Taber Spani
One of the advantages of an unofficial site like this one is being able to mention recruits. Today's New York Times has a lengthy story on Taber's involvement in the National Christian Homeschool Basketball Championships. UConn and Tennessee are after Taber in a major way. I assume Deb Patterson and Shalin Spani are, too. She scored 39 points in the national title game yesterday.
3/14/08 Kimberly Dietz not able to play in the NCAA tournament
I'm very sad to report that Kim has a season-ending knee injury which came seven minutes into the Iowa State game. Coach Deb Patterson has stated through K-State Sports Information, "We are saddened for Kimberly that she has lost her opportunity to compete in the NCAA Tournament during her senior season. She will be with us each step of the way through our postseason NCAA Tournament run and travels. She will be back to 100 percent and has great post-collegiate basketball opportunities ahead of her." Here's a related story from the Manhattan Mercury.
Kim Dietz, a 2008 All-Big 12 first teamer, ends her K-State career at #10 in the all-time scoring list, with 1,321 points. Had she continued into the NCAA tournament, she would have easily achieved #9 on the list. Dietz has 306 career assists, and is fourth in career three-point field goals at 230. She ended in the top ten career games played. She led the Big 12 this season in three-point field goals per game, at 2.29. I'm sure no one reading this needs to be convinced that Kimberly Dietz played a critical role in the Cats' wonderful season (critical = our leading scorer). My thanks to a legendary player, an awesome person and a great Wildcat.
3/10/08 Cats moving up in the AP poll
K-State (21-8) is up to #15 in today's AP Poll. Baylor (24-5) is #9, Texas A&M (23-7) is #11, Oklahoma (21-7) is #13 and Okie State (23-6) is #17. Is it any wonder that the Big 12 is the #1 RPI conference? Yes, that's right. The K-State Wildcats are the champions of the #1 conference in the nation.
3/07/08 Big 12 Postseason Tournament Schedule
Now it's time for the Cats' quest for another trophy. Here's the Big 12 Postseason Tournament Schedule, direct from your pals at the Big 12. The Cats will play the winner of CU/ISU at noon on Wednesday, March 12 in Kansas City's Municipal Auditorium. The game is to be carried on Fox Sports Midwest.
3/07/08 Shalee Lehning: Big 12 Player of the Week
For her 29-point, 17-rebound performance vs. the KU Bluebirds, K-State's own Shalee Lehning was named Big 12 Player of the Week today. Here are the announcements from Big 12 Conference and K-State Sports Information. It's definitely time for Shalee to be recognized!
3/07/08 Big 12 Postseason Awards Announced
Four very deserving women have been named to the All-Big 12 team for the 2007-08 season. Here's the Big 12's announcement, a story in the Topeka Capital and a fine write-up from K-State Sports Information.
3/06/08 Cats 2008 Big 12 champions!!
- The Cats, 13-3, secured the Big 12 regular season championship with their defeat of a pesky KU team on the James Naismith Court on March 5. I think Naismith was the inventor of KU or something. No... maybe that was Frog Allen. I don't know. And more importantly... who cares?! Beware the Frog.
- I'm unbelievably proud that each and every one of our Cats are K-Staters. This championship, from 12th place to 1st place, is such a great story, and so much fun.
- Baylor, 12-4, lost to Okie State, 11-5, in Waco on March 6, leaving the Cats in sole possession of the championship.
- I went over for the KU game. The crowd was over 50% Cat fans. I stumbled onto the Cats' locker room on my way out of the field house, so I just hung around for about an hour and watched the Cats and their families enjoy the championship. The KU event staff were real nice to just let K-State people hang around and do their thing. Brian Smoller told me that there's a Big 12 policy that a trophy has to be on site in case it is earned. When the Cats walked into their locker room, the trophy was brought in and presented to them moments later. Cool.
- While it would be awesome to have won the trophy in Bramlage Coliseum, is there any better second-choice venue than in Lawrence? Ha ha ha. (maniacal laughter)
- "They're getting the Big 12 Championship trophy in their locker room right about now. We could have stopped that." —Jamie Boyd, KU senior forward
- "That kid tore us up." —Bonnie Henrickson, KU coach, of Shalee Lehning
3/06/08 Stories on the Cats' Big 12 championship
3/05/08 Shalee Lehning wills the Cats to victory...
Leading all scorers by far with a career-high 29 points, Shalee repeatedly drove the basket for 20 points worth of lay-ups and nine points from free throws.
It was a night when the Cats came out a little tight, given the circumstances of tonight's game, and their normal high-percentage shots weren't going down. The team kept sawing wood, as Bill Snyder likes to say, and pulled out of their five-minute scoring drought with critical points from Shalee, a three-pointer from Kimberly Dietz and inside play from Marlies Gipson.
KU sophomore guard LaChelda Jacobs said of Shalee, "I partially take the blame for this loss. (Shalee) Lehning scored on me all night. It was a one-man wrecking show for her. I take the blame for this game, because if I would have stopped her, we win the game. She is a very good player. She finds ways to score. She had three offensive rebounds and I didn't do my job boxing out. I constantly gave her lay-ups."
3/05/08 Dietz joins the all-time scorers top ten tonight
After the glorious KU victory, Kimberly Dietz has 1,321 career points. With her last point tonight, Kim entered K-State's all-time top ten scoring chart, passing Megan Mahoney, Angie Finkes and Gayla Williams in one game. Thanks, Dietz, for your tremendous K-State career.
3/03/08 Cats at #19 this week
In the March 3 AP poll, K-State's #19. Baylor's #8, Oklahoma's #11, Texas A&M's #17 and Okie State is #20.
2/18/08 This month's unsung hero: Shalee Lehning
A writer named Ace Collins has discovered Shalee, and has made her his current unsung hero of the month. It's a very nice write-up, although Shalee's character and leadership are hardly news to anyone in Manhattan.
2/17/08 Cats 56, MU 40
Ashley Sweat and Kimberly Dietz each contributed 15 points as the Cats (10-1) took care of Missouri on the road. Coach P cleared the bench. Struggling at times on offense, the team ended the game at 40% from the field, while holding MU to 21%. Shalee had some spectacular plays, which drew the smiling praise of Deb Patterson. Ladies and gentlemen, we have ourselves a road team!
Oklahoma (8-3) is up next, on Feb. 20. It'll be an awesome game. If the Cats win, they'll be in a great position in the conference race, with only Baylor posing a real threat for the title. Baylor's toughest remaining opponent looks to be OSU in Waco.
2/17/08 Looked at the RPI lately?
The Cats' Real Time RPI today is 13, with a strength of schedule rank of 14. We dropped on strength of schedule after beating 8-16 MU (#152).
2/13/08 Cats 45, ISU 42
An 18-point first half from Dietz kept the Cats alone at #1 in the Big 12 race.
2/05/08 Deep thinking Cats!!
I knew we had an extremely intelligent bunch of players, but here's a wonderful piece of news. All 11 Cats made the Big 12 Commissioner's Honor Roll for fall 2007. (Their press release isn't on their Web site yet.) Only K-State had every player on this honor roll, which calls for a minimum of 3.000. As usual, Lehning, McCullough, Zanotti and Kincaid brought in 4.000s. Carolyn McCullough was honored with the Outstanding Senior Award for her 4.000 cumulative GPA.
Here's Sports Information's release.
1/29/08 Kansas State spreads the wealth in victories
The USA Today Web site has a nice write-up on the team's success.
1/28/08 #51 Marlies Gipson's the Big 12 Player of the Week.
Here are the releases from the Big 12 and K-State Sports Information. Congratulations to Marlies on a well-deserved honor.
1/28/08 ESPN on Gipson and the Cats at Okie State
Here's a nice ESPN write-up on the big win over Oklahoma State.
1/27/08 6-0 in the Big 12!!!!! (KSU 68 / OSU 63)
There's so much awesomeness with this team, where do you even start? How about Ms. Marlies Gipson, since she hit a career-high 21 points (on 7-of-9 field goals)? Marlies got another three-pointer, too. (She makes those suckers all the time in practice.) But the big story may be her 16 rebounds, in a game in which the Cats were outrebounded 52-30. Oops! I almost didn't include 6-of-7 at the free throw line. Without Marlies Gipson in the game today, the Cats would not have won.
Want to beat Okie State on the road? Make sure Kimberly Dietz is on the jet! When her first four threes missed the mark, what did our awesome senior do? Well, she shot more, of course, as a confident senior should, and ended up with 5-of-10 three-pointers. Need clutch free throws late in a close game? Inbound the ball to Dietz, and make your opponent pay for those inevitable fouls. Dietz played all 40 minutes, and logged 20 points (all in the second half). Without Kimberly, the Cats would have come home 5-1.
Ashley Sweat got pounded on left and right, but she showed the Cowgirls, or whatever you call them. She was 5-of-11 and 2-of-5 for 12 points. We saw very reliable play from an extremely valuable team member. It would be a very different season without #4 in there, gettin' it done.
Shalee Lehning continues to amaze people by contributing in so many ways, and the intangibles of her leadership and communication cannot be overlooked. I think Shalee just wills us to victory. Her 6-of-11 from the field translates to a solid 55%. Lehning added six more to her assists collection. As you can see above, she is certain to break the amazing Mahoney's career record. Since the Cats are headed for the NCAA tournament, this could occur in her junior year!
1/27/08 RPI heading up...
As of today, the Cats' RealTime RPI is 21, with a strength of schedule rating of 21. The Cats' next opponent, Nebraska (15-5), have an RPI of 16.
1/19/08 Congratulations to Dietz on
1,000 1,117 points!
Kimberly Dietz was presented her 1,000-point ball by Deb Patterson prior to the Colorado game. She's playing with great confidence in her senior season, and I just wanted to recognize what a steady and valuable team member and leader she is. Thanks for the 194 three-pointers and 167 free throws, too.
In the Big 12 through Jan. 19, Dietz is #10 in scoring at 14.4/game, #11 in field goal percentage at .431, #13 in assists at 3.41/game and #5 in three-point field goals made at 2.18/game.
1/19/08 Confused by Fox Sports Midwest?
Many times before venturing out to the Coliseum I've programmed the VCR, only to come home to nothing. After some checking, I've learned that FSN Midwest's main channel is on DirectTV channel 647. If the game is to be blacked out in Manhattan, you'll likely find the game on DirectTV channel 648.
If you live on the K-State campus like me, you need to know that KSU Telecommunications carries channel 647 on channel 64, and channel 648 on channel 93. If you check the pregame write-up on the K-State WBB site, you'll see they usually have the satellite channels listed.
1/16/08 Shalee Lehning's Big 12 Women's Basketball Spotlight
The Big 12 is doing a spotlight on one athlete per week. Have a look at Shalee's Q & A.
1/16/08 Coach P clears the bench in a 71-45 victory over Texas Tech
It was fun, wasn't it? When the Cats had a comfortable lead in the second half, it was fun to watch them kind of experimenting on offense. We saw a lot of passes... real patient offense... waiting for the kill. I really enjoyed it.
How about another fine night at the free throw line, hitting 12 of 14 for 85.7%? Ashley, Marlies (5 of 5) and Carolyn were perfect on free throws.
Dietz and Ashley led in points, each with a game-high 17. Shalee had a dozen rebounds and nine assists. The crowd went nuts when Zanotti, Kelsey Nelson and Kelsey Hill each came in and hit perfect three-pointers. Eight steals and only nine turnovers contributed to the Cats' success story.
Be there on Saturday evening for the Cats vs. Colorado at 7 P.M.
1/13/08 Shalee leads all scorers in a spectacular victory over #15 Texas
That's right... the always-unselfish Shalee Lehning logged a career-high and game-high 21 points in leading the Cats to a 77-74 win over UT. I've always wanted her to drive to the basket more, since she's so good at it. Shalee, with 462 career assists, is averaging 6.26 assists per game this season. She's on track to break Mahoney's KSU record of 589 assists in November of 2008!
Ashley Sweat played a huge role, with 20 points, 100% on free throws and some sweet three-pointers. Let's not forget that Ashley blocked what might have been UT's game-winning shot. Oops... I almost forgot to mention that Ashley played 45 minutes! Senior Kimberly Dietz sealed up the victory in overtime with free throws, took some point guard duty when Shalee fouled out, and tossed in 15 points. Marlies Gipson had 16 points and 7 rebounds, and shot 50%. Kari Kincaid, once again a starter, also shot 50% and had a busy night, playing 36 minutes.
Want a cool statistic? The Cats hit 17 of 19 free throws, for 89.5%. There's your overtime win, right there! Outstanding!
The Cats once again showed a growing confidence and composure. This was a tremendous win. When the Cats dropped a few tough road games, I was confident that they were going to put the pieces together pretty soon. There was too much talent and brain power for it to turn out otherwise. We have a fun and exciting season ahead of us. Let's all get to the games (in the friendly confines of Bramlage Coliseum, as Brian Smoller likes to say), and show the Cats how much we appreciate them!
1/09/08 Composure: Cats provide Texas A&M's first home loss since February 2006
Coach Gary Blair supports my composure theme by saying, "Give credit to Kansas State. They stayed within their game plan, even though we made those comebacks to get even or ahead. The game was won at the point guard position with (Shalee) Lehning. She didn't panic and kept her team in the ballgame." I'd like to give credit to a bunch of players.
Shalee played the entire 40 minutes, and led the team with 10 rebounds. Kimberly Dietz led all scorers at 6 of 13 on field goals, including 3 of 6 on three-pointers. Ashley Sweat contributed 14 points, with a solid 5 of 8 on field goals (62%). Shana Wheeler hit 60%, Kari Kincaid hit 66%, Marlies Gipson hit 66% and, with a very nicely-timed three pointer, Shalin Spani hit 100% from the field! It was great to see Dani Zanotti in for some major minutes, especially with her usual outstanding defense.
The Cats, going into the game duly warned to expect outstanding defense from the Aggies, shot 51%, while holding Texas A&M to 30%.
More on composure: Coach Blair went on to say, "The game is about execution and hustle. They beat us on all of them and they were quicker than us. The key to the second half was when we fought to get back in the ballgame. They didn't get rattled and came right back and did what they had to do. They settled down like a good basketball team and ran their stuff. Their role players stepped off the bench and did well."
This game, versus the defending Big 12 champions, has to be one of the Cats' most significant victories in recent years. My compliments to all the players and coaches for an awesome start to the conference race.
1/08/08 With Gipson back, Sweat adjusts to a new role, again.
There's a nice story on Ashley Sweat's contributions to the team in the January 8th Manhattan Mercury. (Ashley just hit a three-pointer as I was typing this paragraph, and she got another shot before I could finish the sentence!) Future journalist (and one of the best quotes in athletics) Shalee Lehning calls Ashley, "every team's worst nightmare."
12/05/07 Zanotti sweats the little things.
There's a nice story in tonight's Mercury about K-State's own Danielle Zanotti. I must be smart, because I was saying the same things as in the article just a few days ago. Dani may not make a bunch of points on the average night. Her strengths and focus lean toward defense, screens, communication and that all-important killer instinct. We're very lucky to have her intelligence and determination. #25 gets it done, every time out.
11/21/07 Kari burns up the nets!
Kari Kincaid came off the bench vs. #19 Michigan State to score 18 points in 27 minutes. She hit six-of-eight from three-point range. As the game (final: 68-65) was very close, I'm not sure why she wasn't being handed the ball most times down the court in the second half. She would have made the difference.
The starters need to step up on offense. Kimberly Dietz had 16 points. The other four starters had 23 points combined, with field goal success of 1-7, 2-8, 1-4 and 1-2. The Cats overall went 36.7% on field goals... not quite enough vs. a top 25 opponent.
Marlies Gipson had 13 rebounds. These, combined with points from Dietz and Kari, kept us in the game.