Johnson’s Jumper Lifts K-State to Cayman Island Classic Title

Via K-State Athletics

GEORGE TOWN, Cayman Islands – Senior Keyontae Johnson’s jumper with 4.7 seconds helped lift Kansas State to a 61-59 win over LSU to capture the 2022 Cayman Islands Classic Championship on Wednesday night before 2,400 fans at The John Gray Gym.

The tournament title was the 17th in school history and the first since winning the 2018 Paradise Jam.

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K-State (6-0) had to survive some nervous moments to earn the victory, as both teams called their full allotment of timeouts (2 each) before the last 4.7 seconds played out. LSU (5-1) was able to dribble up the court and seemingly tied the game at 61-all at the buzzer. However, the officials reviewed the play and waved the shot off after they discovered that the clock didn’t start on time and the shot came after the game clock had expired.

Senior Markquis Nowell was named the tournament MVP, while senior Keyontae Johnson was selected to the all-tournament team. Nowell averaged 18.7 points and 9.0 assists in the 3-game tournament, while Johnson averaged a team-best 19.3 points on 53.6 percent shooting with 6.0 rebounds per game.

Nowell led all scorers with 18 points on 6-of-14 field goals with 4 assists and 4 rebounds, while Johnson and senior reserve Desi Sills added 16 points each. Sills provided a spark to the Wildcats after Johnson had to leave the game with 13:31 remaining in the game with his fourth personal foul.

Sophomore Cam Carter also proved vital in the victory, snagging a career-high 7 rebounds – all on the defensive end – while posting 6 points, 1 assist and 1 steal in nearly 25 minutes.

K-State moved to 6-0 to start a season for the first time since 2018-19.

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Derek Nester
Derek Nester
Derek Nester was born and raised in Blue Rapids and graduated from Valley Heights High School in 2000. He attended Cowley College in Arkansas City and Johnson County Community College in Overland Park studying Journalism & Media Communications. In 2002 Derek joined Taylor Communications, Inc. in Salina, Kansas working in digital media for 550 AM KFRM and 100.9 FM KCLY. Following that stop, he joined Dierking Communications, Inc. stations KNDY AM & FM as a board operator and fill-in sports play-by-play announcer. Starting in 2005 Derek joined the Kansas City Chiefs Radio Network as a Studio Coordinator at 101 The Fox in Kansas City, a role he would serve for 15 years culminating in the Super Bowl LIV Championship game broadcast. In 2020 he moved to Audacy, formerly known as Entercom Communications, Inc. and 106.5 The Wolf and 610 Sports Radio, the new flagship stations of the Kansas City Chiefs Radio Network, the largest radio network in the NFL. Through all of this, Derek continues to serve as the Digital Media Director for Sunflower State Radio, the digital and social media operations of Dierking Communications, Inc. and the 6 radio stations it owns and operates across Kansas.

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