Nae’Qwan Tomlin scored 15 points and Keyontae Johnson added 14 as Kansas State dominated Rhode Island en route to a 77-57 victory on Monday in an opening-round game at the Cayman Islands Classic in George Town, Cayman Islands.
Tomlin shot 5 of 8 from the field to go along with six rebounds and five blocks, while Johnson shot 3 of 8 from the field but 7 of 8 from the free-throw line to go along with five rebounds.
Kansas State’s Markquis Norwell finished with nine points and a game-high 12 assists, with David N’Guessan chipping in 12 points and team-high seven rebounds.
The Wildcats (4-0) advance to face Nevada (5-0) in the semifinals on Tuesday night, while Rhode Island (1-3) will play in the consolation bracket against Tulane (3-1), which lost to the Wolf Pack 75-66 on Monday.
The Wildcats, who never trailed and led by as many as 24 in the second half, shot 28-for-53 (52.8 percent) from the field, including 7-for-16 (43.8 percent) from 3-point range. Kansas State outrebounded the Rams 31-25 and scored 21 points off Rhode Island’s 16 turnovers.
Rhode Island was led by Ishmael Leggett, who had 13 points, five rebounds and three steals, while Brayon Freeman scored 11. Brandon Weston contributed 10 points and 10 rebounds.
The Rams shot 18-for-55 (32.7 percent) from the field, including an abysmal 2-for-12 (16.7 percent) from beyond the arc.
The Wildcats broke the game open midway in the first half. After Jalen Carey’s jumper pulled the Rams within 18-11 with 12:44 left, the Wildcats went on a 24-10 run to take a 42-21 lead following Tomlin’s 3-pointer with 2:25 remaining.
Tomlin scored 13 points and Norwell added nine points in the first 20 minutes for Kansas State, which led 44-27 at the break. Rhode Island was led by Leggett’s seven points.
–Field Level Media