Withey, Robinson Double-Double Up on Cowboys
Feb. 11, 2012
LAWRENCE, Kan. – Fresh off a career-high 25 points in his last game versus Baylor, junior center Jeff Withey set another new career-high, this time with 20 rebounds in an 81-66 win over the Oklahoma State Cowboys on Saturday afternoon in Allen Fieldhouse.
Kansas (20-5, 10-2) played about as good of first half as possible to build a 51-24 lead, but Oklahoma State (12-13, 5-7) never gave up in the second half as the Cowboys, who trailed by as many as 29, cut the lead down to as many as 12.
All five Jayhawk starters finished in double-figures, led by National Player of the Year candidate Thomas Robinson’s 24. Withey came up two points shy of the second 20-20 game of the season for the Jayhawks as he finished with 18 points. Tyshawn Taylor, Elijah Johnson and Travis Releford finished with 12, 11 and 10 points, respectively.
Robinson recorded his Big 12-leading 18th double-double of the season as he added 14 rebounds. Withey also recorded seven blocks to complete his performance. Taylor recorded a game-high six assists, all of which came in the first half.
The Jayhawks shot 64 percent from the field in the first half, but cooled slightly in the second to finish at 48 percent for the game. The Jayhawks continued to shoot well from the free throw line as they cashed in on 15-for-19 attempts.
Defensively, the Jayhawks held OSU to just 32 percent from the field, while outrebounding the Cowboys 50-21. The plus-29 margin on the glass was a season-high for KU, which beat the plus-21 against the Kansas State Wildcats in the conference opener.
Four different Cowboys finished in double-figures on the afternoon, led by Markel Brown’s 21. Keiton Page, Brian Williams and Le’Bryan Nash ended up with 19 and 11 points, respectively.
The highlight of the afternoon was when Kansas honored the 1952 National Championship team. At halftime seven members from the team were able to make it back to Lawrence.
A sloppy, turnover-filled second half for the Jayhawks kept the Cowboys’ hopes alive. After committing just three turnovers in the first half, KU finished with 14.
The Jayhawks could never seem to put together a substantial run in the second half due to turnovers and poor shot selection, in part due to a stepped up defensive effort from the Cowboys. However, the Jayhawks did manage to come up with 11 offensive rebounds in the second half thanks in part to the poor shot selection.
OSU continued to fight as they put together a quick 9-0 run to trim the lead to 19, 59-40. Two three-point baskets from Keiton Page combined with four Jayhawk turnovers forced KU head coach Bill Self to call two timeouts.
KU was able to score at will in the first half as they led the Cowboys 51-24 at halftime. The Jayhawks shot a blistering 64.5 percent (20-31) from the field, while recording 13 assists on 20 of the made field goals.
OSU was unable to keep the Jayhawks off the glass as the Cowboys were outrebounded 22-6 in the first stanza.
Three players were already in double-figures at halftime led by Robinson’s 13. Withey continued his outstanding play as recorded his fifth double-double by halftime with 11 points and 11 rebounds. Johnson also finished with 11 points in the first half to go along with four assists. Taylor led all players with six first half assists to match his six points.
The lone bright spot for OSU in the first half was from senior guard Keiton Page who led the Cowboys with 10 points.
Leading 16-13, the Jayhawks blitzed the Cowboys with a quick 9-0 run to take a 12-point lead, 25-13 off a fast break dunk from Taylor.
KU would outscore OSU 35-11 in the final 12:02 of the first half to extend its lead to as many as 29. During the run, Robinson knocked down his fourth career three pointer, while also having the fortune of having one of his passes in the lane deflected up and into the basket.
Oklahoma State’s Keiton Page scored the first points of the game on a three-pointer, but the Jayhawks quickly responded with a 12-1 run. During the run, KU got its points from three different players led by two three pointers from Johnson.
Kansas travels to Manhattan, Kan., on Monday, Feb. 13 to take on in-state rival, Kansas State in the Sunflower Showdown. Tipoff is set for 8 p.m. and will be broadcast on ESPN. Earlier this season Kansas handed the Wildcats a 67-49 loss in Allen Fieldhouse.