Friday’s basketball: Oakland no match for Kansas
Lawrence, Kan. — Udoka Azubuike was 10 of 16 from the field and his shooting percentage took a nosedive.
That happens when you spend most of your time dunking.
Oh, the Kansas big man still had plenty of dunks Friday night. But he also tried a few nifty hooks, drove to the basket a couple times and finished with a career-high 21 points and 10 rebounds, leading the third-ranked Jayhawks to a 102-59 rout of overmatched Oakland.
But after entering the game shooting a nation-leading 84.8 percent, now it’s a mere 77.6.
“He did fine,” Jayhawks coach Bill Self said. “He didn’t shoot the ball quite as well because I thought a few of the shots he took were outside his range, but I thought he played pretty strong.”
Azubuike had plenty of help.
Lagerald Vick had 15 points and seven rebounds, and Devonte Graham had 14 points and seven assists, as the Jayhawks (5-0) won their 24th straight non-conference home game without breaking a sweat.
Well, there was sweat.
The Jayhawks are still playing just seven scholarship players, a big reason why just about every regular logged big minutes and scored a lot of points.
Malik Newman also scored 15 points, Svi Mykhailiuk had 14 and Mitch Lightfoot had a career-best 11 points with eight rebounds. Freshman forward Marcus Garrett added 10 points.
“Hopefully we can get some pieces back, then it won’t be like that much longer,” Self said. “I do think we got six or seven guys, if they’re playing well they can all get double figures very easily.”
Kendrick Nunn scored 23 points for the Golden Grizzlies (2-3), who welcomed back three-time All-Horizon League forward Jalen Hayes from a four-game suspension. He finished with 14 points.
Azubuike set the tone with a dunk off an alley-oop pass on the game’s first possession, then two more dunks in the next couple of minutes. But the rest of the Jayhawks were quick to join the party, Mykhailiuk doing it from beyond the arc and everybody else going right to the basket.
“The big fella, a bad lob is a good lob with him,” Newman said of the 7-foot Azubuike. “He’s always an outlet when we’re in trouble, just throw it up to the rim and he can go get it.”
Vick’s 3-pointer pushed the lead to 24-8. Lightfoot’s 3-ponter made it 36-14. And by the time Newman ripped away a steal and went coast-to-coast for a basket, the Jayhawks had a 55-26 halftime lead.
Even so, the hard-to-please Self wasn’t totally satisfied.
He benched Azubuike after picking up a silly foul 90 feet from the basket. He got on Newman for his failure to help out on defense. He yelled at Graham for not being authoritative going to the hole.
If only Oakland counterpart Greg Kampe had such problems.
He looked at times exasperated and depressed sitting on the Golden Grizzlies’ bench, especially as the Jayhawks slammed down one alley-oop pass after another. Kampe tried getting on the officials at one point, but in a game that spiraled out of control quickly, it was mostly a wasted effort.
“We do this a lot. We play games like this a lot,” Kampe said, “and the results of today usually don’t happen to us. To have a veteran, senior-laden team, to have Jalen back and to have that happen was very discouraging to me. Our execution was really, really bad.”
Kampe was so disgusted that he used all his timeouts early in the second half.
“I probably wasn’t going to need them in overtime,” he said. “I wanted to use the timeouts as teaching moments. I wish I had six more. I almost took another one and took the technical.”
More state men
(At) Indiana 87, Eastern Michigan 67: Robert Johnson scored 18 points, Josh Newkirk added 17 and Indiana won its third straight. Indiana used a 19-3 run, highlighted by Justin Smith’s fast-break dunk, over a six-minute stretch in the second half to put Eastern Michigan away.
Freddie McSwain Jr. added 10 points and nine rebounds for Indiana (4-2), while De’Ron Davis scored 11 points.
Elijah Minnie had 20 points and seven rebounds for Eastern Michigan (4-1).
Despite a four-minute scoreless drought, EMU had a brief four-point lead in the first half and was within five points, 42-37, of Indiana at the half.
Central Michigan 56, Cal Poly: Shawn Roundtree drilled a 3-pointer with four seconds left in the game to lift Central Michigan past Cal Poly 56-53 on Friday night and send the Chippewas into the championship game of the Great Alaska Shootout.
Roundtree hit a pair of free throws with 32 seconds left to give Central Michigan a three-point lead, but Cal Poly’s Victor Joseph hit a trey to tie it at 53-53 with 22 seconds remaining. Donovan Fields missed a 3-point attempt with 1 second left for the Mustangs.
The Chippewas (4-1), who had not played a game outside the state of Michigan prior to heading to Anchorage, got 19 points and seven rebounds from Kevin McKay to lead the effort. Luke Meyer added 15 points.
Cal Poly (3-3) held a 23-20 lead at intermission, but the Mustangs shot just 20 of 59 from the field (33.9 percent), including 7 of 26 from distance. Fields finished with 20 points and Joseph scored 19.
North Texas 63, Detroit Mercy 57: At Daytona Beach, Florida Brianne Cohen scored 21 and Anja Marinkovic 16 for UDM (0-5) in the San Juan Shootout.
Denver 60, Eastern Michigan 54: Micah Robinson scored 11 for the Eagles (2-3) in the San Juan Classic, which is being held at Daytona Beach, Florida.
Central Michigan 85, San Diego State 76 (OT): Tinaea Moore had 27 points and 19 rebounds to lead the Chippewas (3-1) at the Junkaroo Jam in the Bahamas.
St. John’s 76, Western Michigan 48: Breanna Mobley scored 16 for Western (2-3) at the Gulf Coast Showcase in Estero, Florida.
(At) No. 14 Minnesota 69, Massachusetts 51: At New York, Jordan Murphy scored 16 points and grabbed nine rebounds to spark Minnesota in the first game of the Barclays Center Classic. Amir Coffey added nine for the Golden Gophers (6-0). Luwane Pipkins led the Minutemen (3-2) with 18.
The Golden Gophers never trailed in winning their sixth straight game. Following Pipkins’ layup and free throw which cut Minnesota’s lead to 18-14 with 8:04 left in the half, the Golden Gophers ended the opening 20 minutes with a 22-7 run.
Minnesota forced UMass to miss seven shots during the stretch and created three turnovers. Over the course of the half, the Golden Gophers held Massachusetts to 29 percent shooting. For the game, UMass shot 32 percent and committed 15 turnovers. Off of those 15 turnovers, Minnesota scored 24 points.
Massachusetts’ turnovers and missed shots allowed Minnesota to get into its transition game. When the Minutemen did manage to get back defensively, the Golden Gophers found Murphy in the low post for quick scores.
In the second half, the Golden Gophers’ lead grew to 26 after Coffey’s layup 2:54 after the break.
No. 18 Purdue 89, No. 2 Arizona 64: At Paradise Island, Bahamas, Dakota Mathias scored 24 points in the seventh-place game at the Battle 4 Atlantis, sending the Wildcats home with three losses in three days.
The Boilermakers (5-2) had struggled with their shooting through two tournament losses of their own, but shot 57 percent and made 11 of 22 3-point attempts in a break-loose performance.
Carsen Edwards added 22 points in what could have been a possible title-game matchup in the eight-team tournament. Instead, the Boilermakers and Wildcats found themselves playing the final game just to salvage a win.
Now, shockingly, Arizona (3-3) is the lone team leaving the Bahamas with an 0-3 tournament record.
Freshman Deandre Ayton had 22 points before fouling out for the Wildcats, while junior Allonzo Trier — who came in averaging 27.8 points — finished with just eight on 3-for-10 shooting.
No. 7 Florida 111, No. 17 Gonzaga 105 (2OT): Jalen Hudson had a career-high 35 points, including eight 3-pointers, in Portland, Oregon, at the PK80 Invitational. Chris Chiozza added a career-high 26 points and 10 assists for the Gators (5-0), who go on to face No. 1 Duke in the bracket championship on Sunday. The Blue Devils rallied to defeat Texas 85-78 in overtime earlier in the day.
Hudson hit a 3-pointer with 1:41 left in the second overtime that put the Gators up 106-99. Gonzaga closed within 106-102 on Johnathan Williams’ layup, then within 109-105 on Corey Kispert’s 3-pointer with 11 seconds to go but couldn’t get closer.
Williams finished with a career-high 39 points and 12 rebounds for Gonzaga (4-1).
In the first overtime, Silas Melson got a layup to tie it at 95 with 1.8 seconds left, but missed a free throw that would have won it. Egor Koulechev was called for travelling on a heave down the court, giving Gonzaga back the ball with 0.7 seconds left but Melson missed a 3 from the corner at the buzzer.
Gonzaga went up 78-76 on Josh Perkins’ layup and free throw with 40.1 seconds left in regulation. KeVaughn Allen’s layup tied it and the game went to overtime.
The crowd at the Moda Center was decidedly on the side of Gonzaga, which is about a 5 ½-hour drive from Portland. Fans gave the team a standing ovation as they left the court at halftime with a 36-29 lead.
Killian Tillie finished with 17 points for Gonzaga before he fouled out in overtime. Josh Perkins also had 17, all in the second half, before also fouling out.
The Zags and Gators were among 16 teams playing in two brackets at the PK80, which celebrates Nike co-founder Phil Knight’s 80th birthday.
Gonzaga and Florida were in the Motion Bracket, playing Friday at the Moda Center, home of the NBA’s Trail Blazers.
Melson’s early 3-pointer that put Gonzaga in front 7-2 drew a roar from the crowd. Melson went to Portland’s Jefferson High School.
Williams went on a personal 8-0 run, with a free throw, a dunk, a 3-pointer and a jumper to put Gonzaga up 27-23, and the Bulldogs went into halftime with a 36-29 lead.
Florida wrestled back the lead on Hudson’s 3-pointer, which made it 42-41. Hudson hit another 3 that pushed the lead to 53-49.
The teams also met last season over the Thanksgiving holiday in the AdvoCare Invitational. Gonzaga won 77-72 and went on to win the final 73-71 over Iowa State.
Overall, the Zags won two of the previous three meetings with the Gators.