Final, KU wins 88-74
Revenge came quick and hard in Allen Fieldhouse, as Kansas University may have officially busted out of its February mini-slump with an 88-74 thumping of Kansas State Saturday night.
KU withstood a 39-point, 11-rebound barrage from K-State standout freshman Michael Beasley with a deep, balanced effort, points coming from several reliable sources.
Brandon Rush led the Jayhawks with 21points, including a 5-of-9 showing from long-range. As a team, the Jayhawks hit 11 of their 23 three-point attempts.
Sherron Collins scored 18 off the bench, while Russell Robinson snapped a recent offensive slump with a 14-point outburst, including two late trifectas. Darrell Arthur and Darnell Jackson each scored 10.
Outside of Bealsey's showing, KU stymied almost every other effort K-State made at a comeback. Bill Walker, who scored 22 points in the Jan. 30 meeting in Manhattan, scored nine points, with most of them coming late with the game out of reach. Jacob Pullen, who scored 20 in the 'Cats win earlier this season, had just three. Kansas State was plagued by 20 turnovers.
The Jayhawks, 26-3 overall and 11-3 in Big 12 play, are now tied atop the league standings thanks to Texas Tech's win at home over Texas earlier in the afternoon. Coincidentally, KU now faces Tech Monday night at 8 p.m. in the final home game for six Jayhawk seniors.
Kansas State, 18-10 overall and 8-6 in the Big 12, faces Colorado at home and Iowa State on the road in its final week of regular season play.
For more on this story, log back onto KUSports.com and read Sunday's Journal-World.
3:09, second half, KU leads 82-65
A Michael Beasley dunk helped the stud freshman continue to pad his stats, but KU then went on another one of its wild mini-runs. First, Brandon Rush canned a corner three-pointer, giving him 21 points on the night. Then Sherron Collins went to work twice in transition wrapped around a Frank Martin timeout. First he took it himself coast-to-coast, but his second score was a follow-up to a Darrell Arthur miss in transition, putting KU firmly ahead 71-49 with 7:58 to play.
Sherron Collins kept the run going for KU after two Beasley free throws, hitting his second trifecta of the game. Beasley added in five straight points for KSU, giving him a game-high 30, but the Jayhawks kept the home momentum going with a two-handed flush slashing down the baseline. Beasley hit another three-pointer, but it was again moot as Sherron Collins and Russell Robinson hit treys of their own around it, putting KU ahead again by 21 points at 82-61.
A pair of Bill Walker buckets - his second and third of the game - brought the game to its final full break at the 3:09 mark.
10:45, second half, KU leads 63-47
Jacob Pullen cashed a three for K-State right out of the full timeout, but KU went back to what was working so far in the second half, and that led to Darnell Jackson's third dunk since the break. Then, after a Beasley two - his first of the half - Darrell Arthur hit a fading two off the glass against Darren Kent.
K-State then began to make its push. Surrounding a Brandon Rush bucket, which gave him 18 points on the night, Blake Young tipped in a Beasley miss, and Young then scored an and-one two down the baseline. Young hit the free throw, and Beasley got himself to the line on the other end, drawing the third foul of the game on Arthur. Beasley swished both, giving him 21 points on the night and pulling K-State to within 14 points at 58-44.
Sherron Collins scored his first points of the second half, but K-State again slugged back, this time with Darren Kent hitting a three. Mario Chalmers cancelled it out seconds later with his first three-pointer of the game.
15:42, second half, KU leads 52-32
Darnell Jackson started the second half for KU with a huge throwdown off a miss, and after an empty possession from K-State, Brandon Rush hit his fourth three-pointer of the game - from the corner - off KU's 14th offensive board of the game.
Jackson then tipped in a two out of a Frank Martin timeout off of a Mario Chalmers miss. That sequence came on the heels of Michael Beasley missing a long two-point jumper.
Darrell Arthur made it a 9-0 run for KU out of the half, slipping in two after another KU offensive board.
Russell Robinson threw a lob for Darnell Jackson, who scored for the third time in the second half after a pair of K-State misses. A Beasley three was the final score before the first full timeout of the second half, with KU leading by 20 and again securely in command.
Halftime, KU leads 41-29
Beasley hit the free throw out of the timeout, and after each team swapped empty possessions, Beasley earned his way to the line again after snatching a high rebound off a Sasha Kaun miss. He canned both of those, pulling the Wildcats to within 10 points with just under two minutes to play in the half.
KU's offensive drought continued as both Sherron Collins and Mario Chalmers missed three-pointers, giving the ball back to the 'Cats again, but this time KSU couldn't capitalize, with Mario Chalmers getting fouled and sent to the line off a Beasley three miss.
Chalmers made one of two, but grabbed the offensive board off the miss. KU couldn't extend the lead any more, and after Beasley free throw before the half, Collins hit a short two heading into the half, as holds a 12-point lead.
Brandon Rush led the Jayhawks with 13 points, including a trio of three-pointers. Sasha Kaun scored seven off the bench, while Darrell Arthur had six.
Michael Beasley, who left early in foul trouble, led all scorers in the first half with 14 points. He also had a team-high seven rebounds. The scoring was a boost for KSU, who got a combined two points from Bill Walker and Jacob Pullen. Those two combined for 42 in the first meeting between the two teams.
3:12, first half, KU leads 38-25
Darren Kent ended a mini scoring drought for both teams out of the timeout, rolling in two from short range off the glass, then, after a Darrell Arthur miss, Michael Beasley got himself to the free throw line for the second time on the night, drawing Arthur's second foul of the game at the 6:28 mark.
Beasley missed the first and swished the second, giving him eight points on the night before taking a seat on the bench in place of Dominique Sutton.
Brandon Rush hit a pair of free throws in the double bonus off a reach-in foul on Sutton, and Sasha Kaun spun in two more off the glass to give KU back a somewhat-commanding 17-point lead with just over five minutes to play in the half. Clent Stewart then got to the line in a double bonus situation of his own for KSU, hitting two free throws to give him four points on the night.
Stewart scored yet again after an offensive goaltending call against Rodrick Stewart, but Sasha Kaun's consistent night continued as he muscled in two more points - giving him seven - off a feed in between a pair of KSU defenders.
Beasley scored at the 3:12 mark while being fouled by Russell Robinson to make it a 13-point game heading into the half's final full break at 3:12.
7:54, first half, KU leads 32-18
Mario Chalmers and Darrell Arthur each missed close looks out of the timeout, but Jacob Pullen missed a three from straight-on for K-State, keeping the 'Cats punchless from long range on the night. Blake Young wound up with the ball after an Andre Gilbert offensive board, though, and he got to the line after drawing contact underneath. He hit both tosses, making it 23-11 with KU out in front.
Cole Aldrich had a short look of his own on the other end, but the Jayhawks kept the ball alive off the miss and Sherron Collins splashed a deep three from the left wing. Then the inbounds pass was stolen and Brandon Rush dumped in two off the glass, putting KU ahead by 17 points and again forcing the Fieldhouse crowd to explode.
KU called a 30-second timeout after forcing another K-State turnover, and on the other end, Russell Robinson slashed hard to the rack and drew contact. He hit one of two free throws, continuing to push KU's lead, now at 18 points.
Beasley missed a three on the other and in transition, Brandon Rush continued to swell, hitting a three off a kickout from Sherron Collins. As the shot dropped, Bill Walker was called for his third foul of the game under the basket while trying to box out, sending him to the bench with just two points to his credit.
Beasley finally scored his second bucket of the game while being guarded closely by Sasha Kaun. Then, after a Darrell Arthur miss and Beasley board, the 6-foot-11 freshman cashed K-State's first three of the game, forcing Bill Self into a 30-second timeout of his own.
Rush was short on a three try from the corner out of the timeout, but Darrell Arthur chased down the offensive rebound. Moments later, however, Mario Chalmers was called for a travel, sending the game to a full break with KU ahead still 32-16.
11:47, first half, KU leads 23-9
Bill Walker was called for his second foul out of the timeout after an Andre Gilbert shot missed for KSU, but he was left in the ball game. Sasha Kaun went on to hit one of two free throws, but Clent Stewart followed it with a running two off the glass for K-State.
KU's offense continued to click against the 'Cats, with Rodrick Stewart - in his first game back since attending hi sbrother's funeral in Seattle - flipped a pass from the post out to Brandon Rush, who canned his first three of the game.
Dominique Sutton got to the line then for the 'Cats, playing without Walker or Beasley in the game, and hit one of two, but Russell Robinson got himself to the stripe and swished a pair, putting KU ahead 21-9 just outside of the 13-minute mark. After Sasha Kaun got fouled and sent to the line for a bonus trip, Michael Beasley checked in with 13:05 showing on the clock.
Kaun hit both to put KU ahead 23-9.
Kaun fouled Beasley on K-State's next possession, sending the star freshman to the line for the first time on the night. He missed the front end of a bonus trip, but the ball went out of bounds and stayed with the Wildcats.
Bill Walker then missed a three for KSU, and a tie-up on the other end for a loose ball between Beasley and Cole Aldrich sent the game to a full break with the Jayhawks still ahead by 14.
15:28, first half, KU leads 15-6
K-State controlled the game's opening tip, and after slashing to the bucket, Darnell Jackson hacked Blake Young on his way up for two inside, getting the 'Cats to the free throw line just 19 seconds in. Young cashed both.
Darrell Arthur missed an inside try over Michael Beasley on KU's first possession, but off the offensive board, Arthur swished a six-foot jumper. The Jayhawks then got the ball back when the Wildcats went out of bounds on the opposite baseline.
Russell Robinson put the Jayhawks ahead 4-2 with a quick slashing layup, but Michael Beasley quickly dropped in two of his own off the glass, again seating several fans. Though Beasley was called for his first foul of the game moments later at the 18:26 mark.
Brandon Rush swished a three from the right wing off the inbounds pass, giving KU a 7-4 edge. Beasley was called for a charge at the 17:55 mark and headed for the bench with two fouls, putting a huge chip in KU's corner. Bill Walker was then whistled for an infraction against Jackson 14 seconds later, giving KSU three quick team fouls.
The 'Cats stole the inbounds pass, but Clent Stewart's layup in transition was swatted away. Darrell Arthur used the opportunity to put in two off the glass on a turnaround move, putting KU ahead 9-4.
Bill Walker's first shot of the game was a three on the left wing which missed short, and Arthur again went to work on Walker with two more off the glass, putting KU up 11-4 less than four minutes in and forcing Frank Martin to call a 30-second timeout.
Walker scored two quickly out of the timeout, but that didn't slow KU at all. Mario Chalmers flew coast-to-coast in response to slip two more off the glass, and after another failed KSU possession, Darnell Jackson dropped in a bucket and was fouled in the process. The free throw missed, but KU took a 15-6 lead with the score.
Jackson's second foul was whistled at the 16:02 mark as he was called for a charge, giving the ball back to K-State.
Bill Walker was stripped loose going up for a shot, though KU couldn't capitalize. A loose ball scrum sent the game into its first full break at 15:28.
Thanks to a little bit of help from Texas Tech this afternoon in Lubbock, the Kansas University men's basketball team has another opportunity in front of it.
Aside from being able to tie Texas, now 11-3 in league play, atop the Big 12 standings, KU has an opportunity to settle the regular season score with Kansas State, who enters Allen Fieldhouse for tonight's 8 p.m. tip, which can be seen on ESPN (Sunflower channel 33, 233 HD).
On Jan. 30, as you probably know by now, K-State ended a 24-year homecourt drought against Kansas with an 84-75 victory. Dominating the game for the Wildcats was a trio of freshmen - Michael Beasely, Bill Walker and Jacob Pullen.
The trio combined for 67 points in the first meeting, with Pullen's 20 coming as the biggest surprised (averaging 10.3 ppg on the season). Beasley's numbers at this point in his record-setting freshman season are almost a given each game (26.2 ppg, 12.6 rpg). The wild card tonight could be Walker, who comes in averaging 16.2 points per game. He's been as up-and-down as anyone in the league of late, first scoring 31 points last Saturday in a loss at Baylor, then two nights later scoring one point on 0-for-14 shooting in a home loss to Texas.
Two names to keep an eye on for KU tonight are Darrell Arthur and Mario Chalmers.
Chalmers scored a team-high 19 points in the first meeting with K-State, and most of the second half was the glue that kept Kansas from completely crumbling. Arthur, on the other hand, proved again in Wednesday's win at Iowa State that when he stays out of foul trouble, he's as dangerous an offensive threat as KU has. The Jayhawks' leading scorer on the year tallied 18 points in Ames, and with the offense working through him early and often, everything else simply fell into place.
KU enters tonight's game at 25-3 overall and 10-3 in Big 12 play. K-State, on the other hand, is 18-9 overall after losing its last four games. The Wildcats are 8-5 in league play, and just 2-4 away from Bramlage Coliseum.