Saturday, February 18, 2006

KU women win first road game

Jayhawks pull out 57-56 OT win over Iowa State


It took overtime, but Kansas University's women's team picked up its first road win of the season when it slipped by Iowa State, 57-56, Saturday at the Hilton Coliseum in Ames, Iowa.

The win completed Kansas' first season sweep of the Cyclones since 2000.

Kansas, which improved to 15-9 overall and 4-9 in the Big 12, moved to 2-0 on the season in overtime games and 6-0 in games decided by five or fewer points.

Both teams opened the game sluggish. After Iowa State led 8-4 at the 13:11 mark, both teams went scoreless for the next five minutes. KU senior Crystal Kemp caught fire to score 12 points in the first stanza, but the Cyclones led the whole first 20 minutes in the period and took a 24-18 lead into the locker room.

KU took its first lead of the game, 31-30, at the 14:19 mark in the second half on a layup from sophomore Marija Zinic, who ignited the Kansas offense down the stretch. The game was back and forth the rest of the way with five lead changes and three ties. Zinic scored 12 points in the period on her way to a career-high 14.

Zinic scored Kansas' last eight points of regulation, but a three-pointer from ISU junior Lyndsey Medders with nine seconds left sent the game to OT. Medders' miracle shot came moments after she went down with an injury. KU senior Erica Hallman quickly raced down the court to put up a last second shot, but couldn't find an opening.

In the extra period, Hallman found space on the Jayhawks' first possession and drained a three. ISU responded with six-straight points and led by three with under a minute to play. Kansas put the ball in Hallman's hands and she converted an off balance layup to pull within one with 47 ticks on the clock. Up one, Iowa State missed its 20th three-pointer of the afternoon and KU junior Sharita Smith grabbed her career-high seventh rebound of the game. Hallman took off for the other end and penetrated the lane where she found an open Kemp, who layed in her first bucket since the first half for the game winner.

Hallman led all KU scorers with 18 points to go with six rebounds. Kemp and Zinic finished with 16 and 14 points, respectively. Smith played a career-high 33 minutes with the primary assignment of shutting down Medders, ISU's top scoring threat, and was largely successful holding the point guard to seven points. ISU senior Brittany Wilkins led the Cyclones with 18 points, while sophomore Lisa Bildeaux added a double-double with 10 points and 11 boards.

Kansas will play its final road game on Wednesday, Feb. 18, when it travels to Lubbock, Texas, to face the Texas Tech at 7 p.m. Following the game in Lubbock, the Jayhawks return home to face its two biggest rivals in Missouri on Feb. 25 and Kansas State on March 2.


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