January 2, 2007

Hardwood Analysis: K-State vs. Xavier

The last time we saw Bob Huggins' Kansas State squad the Wildcats were hoisting a trophy at the Orleans Arena in Las Vegas after finishing off New Mexico to win the Las Vegas Holiday Classic. K-State is now ready to return to the court and figures to face one of the biggest tests of its non-conference schedule as the Wildcats head to Cincinnati to take on Xavier. Can the Wildcats extend their six-game winning streak against the Musketeers?

Hardwood Analysis: Kansas State (10-3, 0-0) vs. Xavier (9-4, 0-0)
Wednesday, Jan. 3
U.S. Bank Arena
6:02 p.m. ESPN2

Point Guards
The dish: Juniors Clent Stewart and Blake Young have both seen extended action at the point for K-State this season, with Young averaging 7.2 points and 2.8 assists a game and Stewart chipping in with better than four points and two assists an outing. Young appears to be regaining confidence in his knee after undergoing minor surgery prior to the trip to Vegas and will likely see most the action against Xavier, the reason being his ability to defend Drew Lavender. The 5-foot-7 junior point guard leads Xavier with 3.8 assists per game, and K-State will need Young's athleticism to combat the speed and quickness of Lavender. Lavender, who averages 7.2 points per game, can also score, as evidenced by his 29-point outburst against the Wildcats two seasons ago while at Oklahoma. Lavender hit a memorable, no-look buzzer beater to win that contest. K-State is solid here, but Lavender gives the Musketeers the slight edge.

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