Archive for Sunday, January 19, 1992

JAYHAWKS SQUEEZE PAST CU, 81-80

January 19, 1992

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— Maybe Kansas will become the first college basketball team endorsed by the American Heart Assn.

Kansas made it two ticker-testers in a row with an 81-80 victory over Colorado on Saturday night in the Coors Events Center.

"I don't think my heart can take it anymore," KU forward Alonzo Jamison said afterward. "I don't think coach (Williams) can, either."

Coincidentally, it featured a similar scenario to last Monday night's 92-80 overtime triumph at Missouri.

In Columbia, Anthony Peeler made two free throws with :01 remaining to send it into OT.

Colorado guard Billy Law could have done the same thing with :02 remaining here. But he missed the first charity.

"I thought it was going in, but it fell short," the 5-10 senior said later.

THEN LAW tried to misfire on the second attempt so the Buffs would have an opportunity for a game-tying stick-back. Law's second shot bounced in, however.

"I was trying to miss it short, but it went in," Law reflected.

Greg Ostertag in-bounded the ball to Adonis Jordan and the clock ran out, sending Kansas to a 2-0 start in the Big Eight Conference race without having played a home game.

"I felt sorry for Billy Law," KU coach Roy Williams said, "but he kicked our tail and gave us a lot of problems."

Mainly, Law gave Kansas problems because he turned the ball over only twice in 38 minutes.

It was Donnie Boyce who gave the Jayhawks' REAL problems. Boyce, a 6-5 true freshman, scored a career-high 27 points.

"He didn't play like a freshman," Williams said. "He played like a senior."

In the end, though, it was Kansas that displayed senior-like poise to pull this one out.

EARLY IN the second half, the Jayhawks appeared well on their way to a blowout. A 9-0 run had them up by 14 points after just 3 minutes.

Then the Buffs, spurred by a near sellout throng of 10,367, unloaded an 11-0 spurt of their own.

"I think we got a little complacent," Williams said, harking back to that sinking spell. "We didn't do the things we needed to do and it almost came back to haunt us."

Kansas went 8 minutes from 12:46 to 4:20 with six free throws. That's all. Six free throws. KU was 0-for-10 from the field during that tailspin.

If Williams had known the Jayhawks would go that long without a field goal. . .

"Well, I'd have said we'd lost, first. And the second thing I'd say is we didn't execute very well," he said.

Still, when Jamison broke the dry spell underneath at 4:20, the basket gave Kansas a 70-68 lead. In other words, KU had weathered its frigid shooting without falling too far behind.

"WITH FOUR minutes left, I told them that the team that played with the most poise down the stretch would win," Williams said.

In the last four minutes, Kansas was 3-for-3 from the floor, 5-for-7 from the free throw line and was guilty of just one turnover.

Twice the score was deadlocked in the last four minutes, the last time at 79-79 after Mark Dean's stickback with :13 showing.

Just five ticks later, reserve guard Steve Woodberry was fouled on a drive, stepped to the line and drained 'em both for an 81-79 Kansas lead.

No pressure, Woodberry said.

"I was relaxed," the 6-4 sophomore said. "Really. . .nothin' but the bottom (of the net) on both of 'em."

Woodberry's charities set the stage for Law to return the favor after he was fouled on a drive by Eric Pauley.

But Law failed and Kansas escaped with its second straight road win.

Now 13-1 overall, the sixth-ranked Jayhawks are off until next Saturday when Nebraska comes to Allen Fieldhouse for a 3:10 p.m. game.

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