Kansas’ Big 12 Run Ends Against Iowa State, 94-83
KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Sophomore forward Perry Ellis was all but unstoppable, churning out 30 points and missing only once, but No. 16/16 Iowa State proved even harder to stop in the Cyclones’ 94-83 victory that pushed No. 10/10 Kansas from the Phillips 66 Big 12 Championship in the semifinal round Friday night inside Sprint Center.
Against Oklahoma State in the quarterfinals, Kansas (24-9, 14-4 Big 12) worked around Joel Embiid’s absence, but the seven-foot center was sorely missed on Friday. Iowa State (25-7, 11-7 Big 12) tied KU’s opponent season-high with 38 points in the paint and ended the night with 94 points – the most surrendered by a Kansas team in regulation during the Bill Self era. For just the 10th time in the last 254 games, KU allowed its opposition to shoot 50 percent or better as ISU made 34 of its 63 shots for a 54 percent mark, another opponent season-high.
Although it took nearly nine minutes to log his first point, freshman guard Andrew Wiggins followed his 30-point performance in the quarterfinals with 22 against the Cyclones, 15 of which came in the second half. He used a career-high 21 shot attempts to get there, for a 7-for-21 night.
Ellis, however, was smoldering all evening. An All-Big 12 Tournament Team member a year ago, Ellis chalked up 30 points on 11-of-12 shooting to set a new Big 12 Championship field goal percentage record (91.7). He went 7-for-8 from the free throw line and pulled down seven rebounds. By halftime, Ellis had nine field goals under his belt, marking the most by a Jayhawk in a half since former KU great Nick Collison hit nine shots in the second half against Duke on March 27, 2003.
The sophomore forward on the other side of the floor, ISU’s Georges Niang, also led his respective offense. He tallied a team-high 25 points, although less efficiently, making 11 of his 22 attempts. Senior guard DeAndre Kane followed suit with 20 points, thanks to a 5-for-6 effort from three-point range to tie his career-high. Although Embiid was missed around the rim, the Cyclones also collected around the perimeter, firing off an opponent season-high 57.9 percent (11-for-19).
Senior forward Tarik Black did his job on the glass with 10 boards, leading the floor in rebounds for the second-straight night as KU held the rebounding margin, 35-31. Junior guard Naadir Tharpe also led the floor with his nine assists, while freshman guard Wayne Selden, Jr. had a game-high two blocks to add to his nine points.
A packed house and a pair of volatile offenses set the immediate tone for a high-tempo game. Five minutes in, Iowa State was brushing up against 60 percent shooting after a pair of early threes from Kane and Dustin Hogue. Though both teams were working quickly, only one was making early shots as Kansas missed nine of its first 14 attempts. Black ripped down an offensive board and put it back up for a lay-in, breaking up a stretch of seven-straight misses. When another jumper from Hogue doubled up the Jayhawks, 18-9, KU used its first timeout.
Iowa State kept the hot hand, this time with Big 12 Player of the Year Melvin Ejim knocking down a three – ISU’s fifth in the first 10 minutes – to maintain a steady lead. Still waiting for its first basket from Wiggins, Ellis led the fight to keep the game close. With four-straight makes already on his stat line, the sophomore forward spotted up for a three-pointer from the top of the key and drained it. Thus, cutting what was a nine-point ISU lead to two. The crowd had barely quieted from Black’s put-back dunk that tied it before Ellis slammed a dunk of his own 12 seconds later – handing KU its first lead of the game, 25-23.
Kansas didn’t stop. In less than three minutes, the Jayhawks piled on a furious 16-0 run. Ellis racked up half of the rally, while Tharpe knocked down free throws to keep it going until freshman guard Brannen Greene capped it a three. The slow start was quickly forgotten as the Jayhawks knocked down 5-of-6 from the floor during the stretch, coupled with four-straight free throws from Tharpe following an Iowa State technical. KU took a double-digit lead, 36-26, and appeared to take control – appeared, that is.
Led by an 8-for-12 first-half performance from three-point range, the Cyclones charged right back. A Hogue jump shot gave the lead right back to the Cyclones, 43-42. Back-to-back buckets from Ellis and just the second basket from Wiggins wrapped up the first-half scoring sprint with KU holding a slim 48-46 lead.
Unfortunately for Kansas, the hot hand returned to Iowa State’s side in the second half. The Cyclones sprinted out to a 13-4 run, led by eight points from Kane, to get out front, 59-52. ISU continued scoring at will, shooting 80 percent (8-of-10) through the first eight minutes to up its lead to nine, 66-57.
Ellis didn’t care. Fouled and falling away from the basket, Ellis sunk a baseline jumper and nailed the ensuing free throw to cut into the Iowa State lead, 68-62.
But the Cyclones were equally disinterested in the Jayhawks’ comeback efforts. Kansas would get no closer than that for the rest of the night as Iowa State ran away with the 94-83 win.
Kansas will learn its NCAA Tournament fate on Selection Sunday, March 16. The Selection Show will be televised on CBS at 5 p.m. CT. The Jayhawks hold the longest active streak with 24-consecutive NCAA Tournament appearances.
KU STARTERS (Season/Career Starts): Jr. Naadir Tharpe (29/29), Fr. Wayne Selden, Jr. (33/33), Fr. Andrew Wiggins (33/33), So. Perry Ellis (32/35), Sr. Tarik Black (13/73)
SERIES INFO: Kansas leads 175-60
ATTENDANCE: 18,972 (sell-out)
- Moved KU to 24-9 on the season.
- Changed KU’s record to 10-6 in Big 12 Championship semifinals and 18-16 in all-time conference tourney semifinals.
- Made KU to 66-25 in league tournament play and 36-9 at the Big 12 Championship.
- Dropped Kansas to 10-8 in games away from Allen Fieldhouse (5-6 in true road games, 5-2 on neutral floors).
- Ended the Jayhawks’ win streak at five-straight against the Cyclones and made the Kansas-Iowa State series to 175-60 in favor of Kansas.
- Made the Jayhawks record to 23-5 all-time at Sprint Center, including 2-1 this season.
- The loss was KU’s first in Sprint Center since falling to Baylor 81-72 in the Big 12 Championship Semifinals on March 9, 2012 – ending a 10-game KU win streak in the venue.
- Changed head coach Bill Self’s record to 21-4 all-time against Iowa State, 324-68 while at Kansas and 531-173 overall. Self is also 31-10 in conference tournament play (22-5 at Kansas).
- Moved Kansas to 2,125-821 all-time.
- Iowa State’s 94 points were the most a Kansas team has surrendered in regulation in the Bill Self era, and the second-most of any games in his 11-year tenure behind the 96 points the Jayhawks allowed in a 108-96 overtime victory – also to Iowa State (2/25/13).
- The Cyclones shot 54.0 percent (34-63), a season-high for an opponent against the Jayhawks this season and the highest since Baylor shot 57.7 percent (30-52) to defeat Kansas 81-58 in Waco (3/9/13).
- The Jayhawks’ 48-46 halftime lead marked the most points Kansas has scored by halftime in a Big 12 Championship game since chalking up the same amount in the first half against Texas (48-33, 3/12/11).
- The 94 total points between the two schools mark the most combined points scored by halftime in a Big 12 Championship game – and is just one point shy of the most points scored in a conference tournament game (in any half) to the 95 points that Kansas and Iowa State put up together in the second half of their meeting in the 2013 Big 12 Championship.
- For the second time this season, Kansas gave up a 10-point lead in a loss (36-26, 5:52 in 1st). The other occurring at Oklahoma State (52-42, 2nd).
- On the flip side, the 12-point deficit the Jayhawks overcame in the second half tied the largest that KU has erased this season, although it also resulted in a loss (48-36 vs. Villanova).
- KU’s 83 points marked the 12th time KU has put up 80 or more in a Big 12 Championship game (any round).
- Kansas erased a nine-point Iowa State lead (18-9, 13:10) with a 16-0 run in a two-minute span. From the 9:31 mark to the 7:03 mark, Kansas changed a 23-16 deficit into a 32-23 lead.
- Kansas gave up an 8-of-12 three-point shooting mark in the first half, tying the most threes that KU has surrendered in a half this season (8-16, 2nd vs. Oklahoma State, 1/18/14; 8-10 1st half vs. Baylor, 1/20/14).
- By night’s end, Iowa State accumulated a 57.9 three-point field goal percentage (11-of-19), the highest by a KU opponent this season.
- Kansas lost just its second game of the year when leading at halftime and is now 22-2 in such games.
- Kansas outrebounded the Cyclones, 35-31, the 28th time in 33 games that the Jayhawks best their opponent on the glass.
- Iowa State head coach Fred Hoiberg was whistled for just his second career technical foul in the first half.
- Kansas was outshot for the eighth time this season and surrendered a 54.0 field goal percentage (34-of-63) – the 10th time in the last 254 games that Kansas has allowed an opponent to make half (or more) of its shots.
- A year ago, sophomore F Perry Ellis recorded his season-high in points against Iowa State in the Big 12 Championship (23, 3/15/13). On Friday, Ellis was poised and ready to repeat the feat. He made his first seven shots from the floor, including his eighth three-pointer of the year and was 2-of-2 from the free throw line.
- By halftime, Ellis had 21 points, tying his own mark for the third-most points scored by a Jayhawk in a single half (21, 2nd half vs. TCU, 2/15/14). Since the record started being kept in the 1998-89 season, only two Jayhawks have scored more points in a half (22 by Sherron Collins at Oklahoma, 2/23/09; 24 by Andrew Wiggins at West Virginia, 3/8/14).
- Ellis’ first-half scoring onslaught was powered by his 9-of-10 shooting mark, the most field goals by a Jayhawk in a single half of play since Nick Collison drained nine shots against Duke on March 27, 2003.
- Ellis finished his evening with 30 points, his second 30-point game of his career (32 vs. TCU, 2/15/14).
- After coming up one point shy of tying KU’s Big 12 Championship record for points in a game with 30 against Oklahoma State on Thursday, freshman G Andrew Wiggins missed his first six shots on Friday. His first point came from the free throw line with 11:50 remaining in the first half. Eight minutes later (3:51), he connected on his first field goal of the night.
- Wiggins now has 574 points on the year, inching his way to first place on the all-time Kansas freshmen scoring list. He now only trails Ben McLemore (589, 2013) as the all-time freshmen scoring leader at Kansas.
- With 181 field goals on the year, Wiggins moved closer to Ben McLemore (198, 2013) for second-most made shots by a Jayhawk freshman.
- Wiggins improved his KU freshmen record for free throws made (169), free throws attempted (220) and scoring average (17.4).
- Wiggins passed Ben McLemore (400, 2013) for the top spot on the freshman field goal attempts chart with 403 after shooting a career-high 21 times on Friday.
- Junior G Naadir Tharpe dished out seven assists and no turnovers in the first frame and ended his night with nine dimes and two turnovers.
- Senior F Tarik Black pulled down double-digit rebounds for the second-straight night with his game-high 10 boards.
- Freshman G Wayne Selden, Jr. blocked a career-high two shots.