It has been a brilliant tournament for Kansas State guard Markquis Nowell, and his memorable performance reached new heights in the Wildcats’ Elite Eight game against Florida Atlantic. The 5-8 speedster handed out 12 assists against the Owls, and that allowed him to become the 5th player in NCAA history to reach 50 assists in tournament play.
Kansas State guard Markquis Nowell
5th player in history with 50 assists in a single NCAA Tournament pic.twitter.com/k6kMg6fplo
— Sportsnet Stats (@SNstats) March 25, 2023
Unfortunately for Nowell, he will not be able to add to his total because Kansas State fell to Florida Atlantic by a 79-76 margin.
Nowell did his best to help the Wildcats advance, but he did not get the same support from his teammates that he did in the Sweet 16 victory over Michigan State Friday night. The guard had 19 assists in the win over the Spartans.
Markquis Nowell scored a team-high 30 points against Florida Atlantic, connecting on 8 of 21 shots from the field, including 5 of 11 from beyond the 3 point line. He was also 9 of 10 from the free throw line. The guard also had 5 steals and 3 rebounds in his effort to help Kansas State advance to the Final Four.
Forward Nae’Qwan Tomlin was the only other Wildcat besides Nowell to reach double figures. Tomlin scored 14 points as he made 6 of 11 shots from the field and added 6 rebounds.
Florida Atlantic was led by Alijah Martin who scored 17 points and hit a huge 3 pointer down the stretch. The 7-foot-1 Vlad Goldin had 14 points and 13 rebounds, and Michael Forrest made four key free throws in the final 20 seconds for the Owls.
The Wildcats attempted to rally in the late going, but could not overcome Florida Atlantic’s clutch play.