No. 16 Arizona State Shoots Down Jayhawks
LAWRENCE, Kan. – Twenty-point scoring efforts from a trio of Sun Devils were too much for Kansas to overcome as the No. 2 Jayhawks fell to No. 16 Arizona State Sunday afternoon in Allen Fieldhouse. Four Jayhawks scored in double figures, including Lagerald Vick, who led the team with 25 points, but ASU (9-0) countered by hitting 50 percent of its 3-pointers (14-28) 51 percent from the field overall to hand the 7-2 Jayhawks their first double-digit loss in Allen Fieldhouse since 2011.
The Jayhawks jumped on the Sun Devil’s early. A Vick alley-oop slam followed by a Malik Newman transition 3-pointer helped push Kansas out to a 10-2 lead and forced ASU coach Bobby Hurley to use his first timeout less than two minutes into the game. That timeout did little to stop the KU momentum. Devonte’ Graham connected on his first of five threes less than 30 seconds later, Vick followed with a layup, and the Jayhawks led. 15-2.
The Sun Devils, though, responded with a 15-3 run to cut the Kansas advantage to 18-17 at the 11:48 mark.
Two more threes from Graham and Vick along with four-straight dunks, two each from Vick and Udoka Azubuike, got the rafters rattling in the Fieldhouse once again and put some distance back between the Jayhawks and Sun Devils. Graham’s third trey of the half gave KU a 37-29 lead with 3:28 left in the half.
But ASU clawed back once again. A three from Shannon Evans II, the Sun Devil’s seventh of the opening 20 minutes, paired with a Romello White lay-in with 36 seconds left in the half got Arizona State back to within 40-37 at intermission.
Both squads traded blows over the first five minutes of the second frame. Graham put in five-quick points during the early minutes, but a trio of ASU 3-pointers tied the game for the first time since the start of the game at 50-50.
ASU claimed its first lead of the game just a minute later with a 3-point play from White and a steal and lay-up from Holder, prompting Kansas head coach Bill Self to call a timeout with his team trailing, 57-52 with just over 14 minutes to play.
The Sun Devil run continued as the Jayhawk shooters went cold. KU failed to connect on a field goal for nearly five minutes and ASU took advantage, stretching the lead to 65-52 with 10:34 to play.
Back-to-back 3-pointers from Svi Mykhailiuk gave the Jayhawks hope of a come-from-behind win, cutting the Sun Devil lead to 78-72 with 5:20 left. But just as it had all afternoon, Arizona State had an answer. Evans II connected on his fourth and fifth 3-pointers of the game, and the Sun Devils led, 83-72, with 4:11 to play. KU could get no closer than seven the rest of the way.
Vick led the KU scorers for the second-straight game, posting 25 points on 11-of-15 shooting. Graham added 19 points, including 5-of-11 from beyond the arc. Mykhailiuk scored all of his 14 points in the second half, while Azubuike and Newman chipped in 13 points apiece.
Kansas will take a week off for final exams before heading north to meet former conference foe, Nebraska in Lincoln for the Shelter Insurance Showcase on Saturday. Dec. 16. Tip-off from Pinnacle Bank Arena is slated for 7 p.m. on FS1. The teams will renew a series that dates back to 1900. The Jayhawks and Cornhuskers met 214 times as members of the Missouri Valley, Big Six, Big Seven, Big Eight and Big 12 conferences until 2011. KU and NU met last season in Lawrence, an 89-72 Jayhawk victory. KU now leads the all-time series, 171-71.
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