Raucous Crowd and Strong Effort Not Enough as GW Falls Short against Kansas State
Sometimes your best effort isn’t enough.
The George Washington Colonials played arguably its best full game of the young season, but it wasn’t enough as they lost a 65-62 contest to Kansas State on Saturday afternoon at the Smith Center in the annual “Buff Out” game. The Colonials had four players in double figures, led by Dwayne Smith’s 14 points. Isaiah Armwood’s impressive defense effort continued with seven blocks, one short of his season high, to go along with 10 rebounds. Angel Rodriquez and Rodney McGruder paced Kansas State with 15 and 17 points respectively to allow the Wildcats to escape with a hard fought seventh win of the season.
The Colonials fed off the energy of a raucous Smith Center crowd from the start and used that enery to grab an early lead. The lead would expand to as many as 7 with 4:30 left in the first half on a layup by Dwayne Smith, but Kansas State would take the momentum from there closing the gap to 29-27 at the half.
The second half started off much like the way the first ended with Kansas State capturing the momentum. Will Spradling heated up with seven points during a 13-4 run to push the Wildcats’ lead to 44-37. However, GW would not fold. Dwayne Smith came alive with eight second half points to key a 10-4 GW run of its own and bring the score to 48-47. The teams would trade baskets for basically the rest of the way with GW grabbing a brief 1 point lead on a lay up by Joe McDonald with just over 5 minutes to play. However, that lead would be GW’s last of the game. Kansas State would regain the lead with strong play by point guard Angel Rodriquez pushing the lead to as many as 3 with under a minute to go. GW had possession with a chance to force overtime, but a last ditch three pointer by Smith at the buzzer went in and out sealing the loss for the Colonials.
But despite the heartbreaking fashion in which the Colonials fell this afternoon, you have to be pleased with the amount of energy and passion GW played with on Saturday. Going in, the Colonials had not given their fans much reason to believe that they would hang with an underrated Kansas State squad for as long as they did, especially after their disheartening loss to Bradley on Tuesday. However, GW fed off the energy of a large and raucous crowd and fought to the very end. If anything, today’s game proved just how formidable an opponent GW can be and just how intimidating a venue the Smith Center can be when the student body and fans show up. Hopefully, this isn’t the last time we see the Smith Center rocking like it did today this season.
With the loss, GW drops to 4-5 on the season. The Colonials continue their tough stretch with a trip to Rutgers on Tuesday night. Tipoff is at 7:30 and you can listen to all the action on WRGW-Colonials Radio Central at gwradio.com.