Kansas State eked out a tough first-round victory over Southern Miss on Thursday, winning 70-64 and moving on to the second round of the NCAA Tournament and a likely match-up with No. 1 seed Syracuse, who plays No. 16 UNC-Asheville later on Thursday afternoon.
The Wildcats were led by a dominant effort from Rodney McGruder and Jordan Henriquez, as Southern Miss couldn't find an answer for either player's athleticism.
McGruder had one of the best games of his career, scoring 30 points on 11-16 shooting and knocking down shot after shot in the second half whenever the Golden Eagles snuck within one possession.
Henriquez, meanwhile, displayed the type of athleticism at 6'11 250 that will have NBA scouts flocking in droves to Manhattan next season, getting 15 points, 9 rebounds and 5 blocks.
Southern Miss, despite giving up athleticism and size at nearly every position, refused to go away, knocking down 7-21 three pointers and keeping the pressure on Kansas State's back-court for all 40 minutes.
In the next round, Frank Martin will need much more from Will Spradling and Jamar Samuels, who combined for only 3 points, if he wants to pull off the upset of Syracuse, who will still be favored by a heavy margin despite losing Fab Melo to a season-ending suspension before the Tournament began.
For up-to-the second scores and updates from every game Thursday, check out the live scoreboard from SI.com.