🏀 Jayhawks Top Omaha to Reach 3-0
LAWRENCE, Kan. – The Kansas Jayhawks picked up their third straight victory with a resounding 81-56 victory over the Omaha Mavericks on Wednesday evening in Allen Fieldhouse.
The win moves Kansas’ record to 3-0 for the third time in the past five years, while the Mavericks drop to 0-3.
The Jayhawks found their rhythm on offense as they shot a season-high 57.4% (31-of-54) from the field. For the first time this season, junior Holly Kersgieter led the Jayhawks on offense with 16 points. Kersgieter was one of four Jayhawks to score in double digits against Omaha. Redshirt-sophomore Chandler Prater had 12 points and was followed by senior Aniya Thomas and junior Zakiyah Franklin who each had 11.
"It was nice to see Holly come on tonight. I intended to play her for a lot of minutes regardless because she needs some game stamina. I thought she impacted the game in every phase."Head Coach Brandon Schneider
During Wednesday’s game, the Jayhawks hosted their ‘Salute to Service’ night to honor those who have served or are currently serving in the United States Armed Forces. The team wore special warm up shirts, showed a video thanking service members and acknowledged those in attendance who have served.
The Jayhawks led 16-14 at the end of the first quarter despite their lowest-scoring first quarter of the season. In the first 10 minutes of play, the Jayhawks were 4-of-8 (50.0%) from the field and 8-of-8 (100.0%) from the free throw line. Despite scoring only 16 points in the first, the Jayhawk defense was able to hold off the Mavericks and force five turnovers, two of which came from shot clock violations.
Kansas maintained their lead throughout almost the entire second quarter. The Mavericks tied it up at 16 during their first possession, but the Jayhawks pulled ahead and went into the locker room ahead 37-30. During the second quarter, senior Aniya Thomas led the way in scoring, picking up nine points after hitting three-pointers on three consecutive possessions.
Coming out of the locker room, the Kansas defense continued to put pressure on Omaha. The Jayhawks forced six turnovers, including two more shot clock violations, and they held the Mavericks to just eight points in the quarter. The Jayhawks were also active on offense, using an 8-0 run over almost three minutes to pull ahead by 17 at the 7:18 mark.
Kansas continued to dominate Omaha on both ends of the court and by the end of the third quarter the Jayhawks had a comfortable lead with the score 61-38.
The fourth quarter consisted of the Jayhawks adding to their lead, allowing everyone to get some playing time. Senior Erica Haynes-Overton made her Jayhawk debut and picked up four points on back-to-back Jayhawk possessions. In total, 12-of-14 players who saw the court for the KU scored in the game.
The Jayhawks are back in action on Sunday, November 21 as they will face the Saint Louis Billikens at 2 p.m. in Allen Fieldhouse. The game will be broadcast on Big 12 NOW on ESPN+.
- A Kansas win moves the Jayhawks to 3-0 on the season for the third time in the past five seasons
- Kansas set a new season-high by shooting 57.4% from the field, hitting 31-of-54 field goal attempts. That mark is the highest by a KU team since January 22, 2020, when they shot 56.3% from the field at Texas.
- Kansas recorded 12 steals; in every game this season Kansas has recorded 10+ steals. The last time this happened was February 6-20, 2016 – a stretch of four games.
- Four different Jayhawks finished in double figures for the second straight game. Holly Kersgieter led with 16 points, followed by Chandler Prater with 12 points and Aniya Thomas and Zakiyah Franklin each with 11 points.
- Kansas forced 22 turnovers on the night.
- Six assists on the night for Holly Kersgieter tied her career high, set on January 25, 2020, at Iowa State.