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Archive for Sunday, January 26, 1992

JAYHAWKS DEVOUR NU

January 26, 1992

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Roy Williams doesn't need to look at the game films.

Even without the benefit of slow-motion replay, he's darn-near positive his Kansas basketball team turned in its best defensive effort of the season Saturday afternoon at Allen Fieldhouse.

The Jayhawks forced 29 turnovers and held Nebraska to 39.7 percent shooting in an 103-78 shredding of the Cornhuskers.

"Right now, I could easily say that," said Williams, confirming KU's No. 1 defensive effort of the year. "We were very active. We made 'em turn it over. We got our break going off it (defense) and didn't give up many uncontested shots.

"The kids really played their tails off," he added.

KANSAS' HAND-IN-THE-FACE perimeter defense shut down Nebraska's potent outside game. The Huskers, in fact, made just four of 18 three-pointers one of 10 the first half as KU built a 52-38 halftime lead.

"We were denying everything and contesting everything," said senior forward Alonzo Jamison. He had nine points, three blocks and a steal. "They had 29 turnovers. I had four myself. That's not the greatest game for me."

KU's defensive play and three-point shooting DID overshadow some problem areas. Kansas hit just 44.9 percent of its shots, but, led by Adonis Jordan's six-of-10 three-point shooting, made 11 of 22 treys.

The 11 three-pointers tied a school record.

"WE HAD a hard time with layups, but we hit 'em from long range," Williams said. "We were 11 of 22, that's about what I like. I want good movement in and out. We did miss a lot in close today, but they bothered us, too."

Nebraska center Derrick Chandler, who scored a team-leading 17 points, had three of NU's seven blocks.

Fifteen of KU's first 27 points came via three-pointers (Jordan had three, Walters two) yet KU lagged, 28-27, with 8:26 left in the first half.

Walters scored five straight points on a three and a pair of free throws following a Danny Nee technical foul at 7:59, and KU opened a 32-28 lead.

Greg Ostertag sank a hook shot and both Ben Davis and Steve Woodberry made one of two free throws, capping a 9-0 run and giving KU a 36-28 lead at 6:16.

NU SCORED four straight points, then Kansas went on an 8-0 run and grabbed a 44-32 lead at 3:12. Richard Scott, who finished with 17 points on seven-of-10 shooting, scored five straight points to cap that burst, one in which the Jayhawks outscored the Huskers, 17-4.

The game was far from over, yet KU's lead would not dip under 10 the rest of the way.

"About that time," said Williams, "we got our break going, our defense forced some turnovers and we stopped them from going to the line. In the last five minutes of the half, we outscored 'em by 10."

NU, down 14 at half, hit 11 of 14 free throws the first half to KU's nine of 16. The Huskers shot just two free throws the final five minutes of the half.

"At halftime," said Williams, "I reminded 'em of the Colorado game. We were up by 14." Yet KU won by a sole point last Saturday in Boulder.

"We didn't have the game won. We wanted to make sure we held our intensity."

JAMISON SCORED four points and Eric Pauley two as KU outscored Nebraska, 6-2, to open the second half. The Huskers, however, sparked by five points from Eric Piatkowski and two from Jamar Johnson, cut the gap to 11 58-47 at 16:28.

A 9-2 KU run, sparked by five points from Pauley, upped the Jayhawks' lead to 18 at 67-49 with 12:47 left.

The Huskers would creep no closer than 13 again. Late, KU even received a three-pointer from walk-on Lane Czaplinski, a bucket that put the Jayhawks over the century mark.

"It may have been our best game in guarding the ball," summarized Williams, again commenting on a defense which forced NU point guard Johnson into seven turnovers.

"Different teams bother people in different ways. We may have and I say MAY have been the first team to run stunts and double teams at them. We ran a lot of people at 'em. He'll be a heck of a player," Williams added, referring to soph Johnson, "and they'll be ready for us in Lincoln."

The Jayhawks, 14-1 and 3-0 in the Big Eight compared to NU (13-3 and 1-2), next face Marquette on Tuesday night in Milwaukee.

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