The Kansas State Wildcats achieved a historic victory on Tuesday night in the first round of the 2021 NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament, earning their first March Madness win since 2018, as they defeated the Montana State Bobcats.
The Wildcats had to weather a strong offensive push from the Bobcats in the second half. However, with a solid defensive effort and some timely offensive contributions, Kansas State was able to stave off the comeback bid and secure a 63-50 victory.
Leading the way for the Wildcats was guard DaJuan Gordon, who tallied 23 points and 7 rebounds in the win. He was ably supported by forward Xavier Sneed, who scored 15 points and pulled down 3 boards. Meanwhile, guard Mike McGuirl added 10 points, 4 assists, and 2 steals.
The Bobcats’ offense struggled to get going all night, and they were ultimately unable to contain the Wildcats’ potent offensive attack. Montana State was led by guard Xavier Bishop, who scored a team-high 17 points.
Kansas State’s win puts them into the second round of the NCAA Tournament, where they will face the No. 6 seed, the UC Santa Barbara Gauchos. The Wildcats will need to step up their game if they hope to advance past the second round and into the Sweet 16.
This victory marks the first March Madness win for Kansas State since 2018, when they made it all the way to the Elite Eight before being knocked out by the eventual national champion, the Villanova Wildcats. With the Wildcats now back in the tournament, the team is looking to make a deep run and build on the success of 2018.