Jayhawks fall to K-State in overtime thriller, 63-59

LAWRENCE, Kan. – A 50 year celebration. A rivalry matchup. A retired jersey. Sunday’s overtime thriller wasn’t an average contest inside Allen Fieldhouse on Sunday afternoon. In front a season-high 5,066 fans, the first edition of the Dillons Sunflower Showdown brought the excitement.

Kansas women’s basketball (11-10, 2-8 Big 12) stormed back in the second half, but just before the Jayhawks could seal the win, Kansas State (12-9, 4-6 Big 12) rallied in the final seconds to force overtime and steal the victory, 63-59.  

The Sunflower State joined together to celebrate 50 years of women’s basketball at Sunday afternoon’s matchup, which included retiring Adrian Mitchell’s No. 21 jersey. Following the halftime celebration, Mitchell’s jersey became just the fourth Kansas women’s basketball jersey to hang in the rafters of Allen Fieldhouse.
In a game that saw 11 leads changes throughout the contest, it was the K-State’s lead in overtime that would stand in the first meeting of the two programs this season. Kansas lead by as many as seven in the third quarter, but the Wildcats stayed within reach and forced overtime on a last second triple before taking the victory in Lawrence.
Junior guard Kylee Kopatich led the way for Kansas with 15 points and career-high 12 boards for her second double-double of the season. The Olathe, Kansas native also dished out a team-best four assists.
Three other Jayhawks also notched double-digit scoring efforts. Junior guard Brianna Osorio netted 15 points, including four baskets from beyond the arc, while junior guard Christalah Lyons contributed 12 points and grabbed six rebounds. Junior forward Austin Richardson concluded KU’s double-digit scorers, knocking in 10 points and grabbing seven rebounds in the Jayhawks’ loss.
The Wildcats were led by sophomore forward Peyton Williams, who netted a game-high 23 points. Junior guard Kayla Goth added 14 points and six assists in the K-State victory.
The Jayhawks relied entirely on the long-range baskets through the first 10 minutes. After a minute and a half without any offense from either side, Richardson knocked in a 3-pointer from the left corner to put Kansas on top, 3-0.
A pair of free throws from K-State’s Goth and a jumper from Williams gave the Wildcats a narrow one-point lead before Osorio netted a second 3-pointer for the Jayhawks as the shot clock expired to give Kansas a 6-4 advantage.
The Wildcats outscored KU, 8-3, to finish the quarter with Kansas’ only points coming from a second Richardson 3-pointer. K-State owned a 12-9 lead heading into the second period.
Senior forward Kaylee Page began the second quarter with a 3-pointer, but the Jayhawks went on to record the next seven points to take a one-point lead after being down by six early in the period. After a nearly four-minute scoring drought for the Wildcats, Williams completed a 3-point play the old-fashioned way to end KU’s 7-0 run and start a run for Kansas State. Kansas battled back within two thanks to a bucket from Osorio and 3-pointer from Kopatich to head into the locker room at the half down, 23-21.
Redshirt-sophomore center Tyler Johnson highlighted the third quarter knocking down the first two baskets of Kansas’ 9-0 run to  open the second half, which put the Jayhawks on top, 30-23, with under five minutes to go in the quarter. Johnson split up a pair of baskets from freshman guard Cymone Goodrich, but K-State pulled back within two going into the final 10 minutes after the ended the period with five unanswered points.
K-State quickly regained a 34-32 lead, beginning the final 10 minutes with four-straight points. Following the Wildcats’ 4-0 start to the fourth quarter, Kansas and KSU traded off the next several baskets until Osorio and Kopatich alternated 3-point baskets, making four-straight triples, to take a 47-41 lead with two and a half minutes remaining in the game.
Kansas State ended the quarter 10-4 run, including a 3-point basket from freshman guard Rachel Ranke with 12 seconds remaining to send the game into overtime.
The Wildcats never relinquished the lead in the overtime, taking a five-point lead with under a minute to go with four-straight points from Goth. Despite a big 3-pointer from Osorio with 14 seconds remaining to cut the K-State lead to 61-59, the Jayhawks couldn’t complete their comeback attempt and dropped the first game of the Dillons Sunflower Showdown, 63-59.
The Jayhawks play No. 6 Texas in a midweek matchup on Wednesday, Jan. 31 at 7 p.m., inside Allen Fieldhouse. The game will be broadcast on the Jayhawk Television Network/ESPN3 and the Jayhawk Radio Network.




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