Big 12 Kansas State Takes Win Over Gents, 73-51
Saturday, December 20, 2008

MANHATTAN, Kan.—A 27 point performance by senior guard Nick Stallings wasn’t enough for Centenary as it fell to Big 12 non-conference opponent, Kansas State, 73-51 on Saturday afternoon.


Centenary (2-10) held an early lead, but couldn’t manage to shoot its way to a win over Kansas State (8-3). Both teams struggled to find what they needed having only faced each other once in history back in 1983.


With 50 seconds into the first half, Stallings sunk his first three pointer of the afternoon allowing Centenary to take the early lead, 3-0. The Maroon and White held a first half lead until the 12:43 mark when Kansas State’s Darren Kent broke a two minute 10-10 tie on a free throw.


After the Gents lost their early lead, the Wildcats managed to go on a 7-0 run pulling away, 17-10. Though, Centenary battled its way back to an even tie at 17 on its own 7-0 run when Jerrald Bonham’s layup sunk net at 6:41. Stallings contributed with a three pointer and a jumper—five of the seven Gent points on that run.


Back-and-forth scoring kept each team within reach of one another. 3:16 left in the half, though, was the last time Centenary scored as Stallings made a free throw. The half ended in favor of the Wildcats when they stretched their lead to 12 on a 9-0 run, as all nine points were scored by Kent. Kansas State ended the half leading, 33-21.


Stallings and Kent each paced their teams with 14 apiece in the opening 20 minutes of play. Centenary shot 31.8 percent (7-of-22) from the floor and 80 percent (4-of-5) from the line, but only pulled down 14 rebounds, none of which were offensive. The Wildcats shot 36.7 percent (11-of-30) and a measly 53.3 percent (8-of-15) from the charity stripe, but were able to pull down 25 rebounds in the first half alone on a small Centenary team.


Coming into the second half with a 12 point deficit to make up, Centenary jumped on board with a three pointer by Anthony Gatlin. Though a quick layup at 17:35 by Wildcat Luis Colon, sent Kansas State ahead, 37-24, the largest game lead at that point. Less than a minute later, Stallings continued to shoot lights out from behind the arch when he made his forth trey of the game to bring the Gents within 10.


After narrowing the lead to 10, a free throw by Brandon Harris, a Wildcat layup, and a tip in by Gatlin with 15:49 remaining proved to be the closest Centenary would come to taking any lead for the rest of the game.


Late game fouls and six-made free throws by the Wildcats gave them a 20 point advantage with only 4:25 left to play. Centenary tried to rally its way back near the end, but couldn’t sink four shots, three of which were three point attempts. Maxx Nakwaasah put up the Gents last shot, a free throw with 18 seconds remaining to make the final score 71-53 in favor of the Wildcats.


On the afternoon, Centenary shot 36.4 percent (16-of-44), while Kansas State 44.1 percent (26-of-59) from the floor. Poor free throw shooting in the second half led to 60 percent (12-of-20) from the line for the Gents and 59.3 percent (16-of-27) for the Wildcats. Kansas State outrebounded Centenary by 20 (45-25) on the game and put up 20 second chance points compared to the Gents’ seven.


Behind Stallings’ 40 minutes of play, 27 points, and seven rebounds was Gatlin with seven points. For Kansas State, Kent led with 24 points and 10 rebounds, while Fred Brown added 14. Denis Clemente and Jamar Samuels added eight apiece.


The Gents will be back in action on Tuesday when they travel to play Texas Tech at 7 p.m. The game can be heard locally on KSCL 91.3 FM or at