Jayhawks Drop Wildcats, Advance To Semis

Final Stats | Photo Gallery

March 11, 2005

<?xml:namespace prefix=”st1″ ns=”urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:smarttags”?>KANSAS CITY, Mo. – Fueled by senior All-American Wayne Simien’s league-leading 15th double-double, the University of Kansas men’s basketball team defeated KansasState 80-67 in the second round of the Phillips 66 Big 12 Tournament in Kansas City, Mo., on Friday at Kemper Arena.

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Kansas improved its overall record to 23-5 while the Wildcats fell to 17-12.

Simien’s 28 points and 14 rebounds paced the Jayhawk attack that placed three players in double figures. Senior Aaron Miles was brilliant from beyond the arc as he splashed in four three pointers to tie his career high. He finished with 18 points, one shy of his season high, and dished four assists.

Sophomore J.R. Giddens hit three treys and scored 14 points. Senior Michael Lee pulled down a career-high 11 rebounds to go with a season-high five assists. Junior reserve guard Jeff Hawkins netted eight points on 2-of-4 shooting from downtown.

After K-State took a quick 3-0 lead to begin the game, the Jayhawks reeled off a 9-0 run to take a 12-3 lead at the 13:12 mark. KU extended its first-half lead to as many as 15 when Miles hit a three-pointer at the 9:51 mark to make the score 23-8. The Wildcats fought back but Kansas held on to the lead for the remainder of the first stanza and led 37-32 at the break.

In the second stanza Kansas came out firing and extended its lead to 50-37 with 14:36 on the clock. The sharp-shooting Wildcats fired back and cut the margin to three when the score was 60-57 with 6:05 left. The `Hawks were able to hold off the pesky `Cats as KSU could never get closer for the rest of the game.

Kansas shot 47.9 percent (23-of-48) from the field while holding K-State to 35.3 percent (18-of-51). The Jayhawks also dominated the boards 42-26.

The win moved Kansas into the tournament semifinals on Saturday where the Jayhawks will play the winner of OklahomaState and Colorado at 3:20 p.m. in Kansas City’s Kemper Arena. Kansas has advanced to the semifinals for five-straight seasons.

KU, which moved its record against K-State in conference tournament games to 11-7 all-time, extended its overall winning streak over the Wildcats to 31 straight.