KU Rolls over NU

The Nebraska basketball team saw its six-game winning streak snapped and lost at home for the first time this season, as the third-ranked Kansas Jayhawks remained perfect on the year with a 79-58 victory in front of a sold-out Devaney Center crowd of 13,099.

In the Big 12 Conference opener for both teams, Kansas raced to a 7-0 lead and never trailed while improving to 16-0 on the season. The loss dropped Nebraska to 11-3, while snapping the Huskers' 12-game home winning streak that dated back to last season and included double-digit victories in all 12 contests.


Kansas asserted itself from the opening tipoff, scoring on its first three possessions. The Jayhawks hit their first five shots – and a pair of free throws – to build an early 14-5 advantage.


KU led by double digits for the first time at 23-13 midway through the period after back-to-back baskets from Sasha Kaun. Nebraska responded with a 7-0 run to pull to within 23-20 behind the strength of five free throws.


Nebraska converted on its first 10 free throw attempts of the game before Maric missed three straight with NU trailing 29-24. From there, Kansas scored 13 of the next 16 points.


The Jayhawks used their long-range shooting to run off 10 straight points and go in front 39-24. Brandon Rush hit one of his four first-half 3-pointers during the spurt as Kansas hit 56 percent from the field, including a 6-of-13 effort from behind the arc.


Paul Velander added some hot shooting of his own, connecting on all three of his first-half shots, including a pair of late 3-pointers that cut the halftime deficit to 42-30. Velander scored a team-high eight points in the first half, but the rest of the team did not fare as well, as Nebraska hit just 8-of-23 shots.


Kansas continued to pull away in the opening minutes of the second half, using another 7-0 run to stretch the lead to 17. A quick 5-0 Nebraska run cut the gap to 49-37 but the Huskers were never able to get within single digits.


Hindering the Huskers' comeback effort was a stretch of nine consecutive missed free throws. Meanwhile, the Jayhawks hit 11 of their first 13 at the stripe. Kansas essentially clinched the game with a 13-3 run to go in front 66-44 with just more than seven minutes remaining.


NU continued to fight, with Cole Salomon drilling a three and Jay-R Strowbridge adding consecutive field goals. Maric added back-to-back baskets of his own and broke the Huskers' missed free throw string to complete a three-point play. Kansas scored the game's final five points to close out the 21-point victory.


The Jayhawks shot 53.8 percent for the game, including 10-of-22 from 3-point range. Nebraska connected on only 40 percent of its attempts, but took care of the ball well in only committing 12 turnovers.


Maric led the Huskers with 19 points and four rebounds, while Ryan Anderson added 12.


KU placed four players in double figures, led by 19 from Rush, who was 5-of-7 from beyond the arc and 0-for-4 inside it. Darnell Jackson nearly had a double-double with eight points and a game-high eight rebounds. The Jayhawks were plus-13 in rebounding and outscored the Huskers 32-16 in the paint.


Nebraska returns to conference action on Tuesday, when the Huskers hit the road for the first time in over a month for an 8 p.m. contest with Colorado. That game can be seen in the state of Nebraska on FSN Midwest, and will also be available nationally on ESPN FullCourt.


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