KU came out energized against Temple on Saturday and beat the Owls, 71-59, at Allen Fieldhouse. The Jayhawks opened the game with a 13-2 lead and broke open the contest midway through the second half with a 15-2 run.
“It was a big win coming off a loss,” said
sophomore guard Brady Morningstar. “It was a tough loss last
week (to Massachusetts) and it’s good to get our juices
flowing again heading into a tough game with Arizona (at Tucson on
KU (8-2) led the entire game, but this wasn’t an easy
victory. The crowd was on edge most of the game until Kansas made its
second-half run. With KU leading 48-46, Tyshawn Taylor hit a jumper in
the paint and Cole Aldrich swished a turnaround baseline jumper to
spark the 15-2 run. Sophomore Sherron Collins scored five points with
an assist during that stretch to propel KU to a 63-48 lead with 6:19
And this game was basically over.
The Owls (5-4) got no closer than 12 points the rest of the way, and
that didn’t come until star guard Dionte Christmas scored the
game’s final points with a three-pointer with 1:48 left.
“Coach (Bill Self) said we needed to break it
open,” Collins said about KU’s decisive run.
“We were playing well and we had a lead, but we
didn’t want them to come back. So I tried to get a spark and
get a run going, and fortunately we did.”
Collins led KU with 19 points, while Aldrich added a double-double (13
points and 11 rebounds). Morningstar (11) and Taylor (11) also scored
in double figures. Markieff Morris got the starting nod and had an
impressive game with eight points and five boards in 16 minutes, while
twin brother Marcus played well with nine points and three steals in 25
Self praised senior walk-on Matt Kleinmann for his solid play in the
first half filling in for foul-plagued big men Aldrich, Markieff Morris
and Quintrell Thomas. Kleinmann grabbed four rebounds in four minutes.
Temple appeared on the verge of possibly shocking Kansas and ending its
29-game winning streak at Allen Fieldhouse, as Christmas made four of
five three-pointers (three straight) to open the second half and cut
KU’s lead to 48-46. However, the senior missed his next three
treys and Temple went just 1 of 6 from the field during KU’s
Christmas scored 18 of his 21 points (season average) in the second
half with all field goals coming off of six threes. Morningstar did a
superb job containing Christmas the first half; he didn’t
score his first points until 1:51 remaining before halftime. KU then
burst out on a 7-0 run to lead 38-30 at intermission.
“For the most part we did a good job guarding him and he
still had 21 points,” Self said.
Overall, Self was pleased with the Jayhawks’ play after four
less than impressive performances. KU shot 64 percent in the first half
and 52.7 percent for the game, while holding the Owls to 40.4 percent
shooting. (Temple, though, shot 10 of 20 from three-point range.) KU
also outrebounded Temple 34-26 and outscored the Owls 14-0 in fastbreak
“We were pretty efficient offensively other than a few
possessions in the first half,” Self said. “I am
not going to say that we were great offensively today but we certainly
played better than we have been playing lately. They cut into our lead
in the second half but we executed when there was pressure. There were
a lot of things that we did very well today.”
KU now heads to Arizona on Tuesday before a short holiday break. Self
certainly has a better feeling about his team than he he’s
had the past few weeks, and especially after the bitter loss to UMass.
“I think we lost last week because of the way we approached
the game,” Self said. “You have to approach
practice a different way. I think we were a lot more upbeat Wednesday,
Thursday and Friday of this week. We had good, crisp
And those practices paid off in KU’s victory over Temple.
“I’ve leaving out of here thinking we made some
progress,” Self said.
'Hawks Drop the Owls, 71-59
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