Update #10: Final, KU wins 92-74
COLUMBIA, Mo. - Keon Lawrence hit on one of two free throws after the game's final timeout on the floor, but KU still held a 14-point lead with less than four minutes to go.
Marshall Brown then drew a foul under the basket to follow a KU empty possession. Brown missed the first, and then clanked the second off the front iron, keeping him scoreless in the second half and with three points total on the day - well below his season average of 11.
Russell Robinson then went to the line and hit one of two free throws as Mizzou Arena began to clear out for the afternoon. Keon Lawrence came back to hit one of two as well.
Julian Wright then corralled a Russell Robinson miss in the lane, put it back with ease and bumped his point total to 33, besting his previous career high now by 10.
The Jayhawks ultimately finished off Missouri 92-74, with Julian Wright leading the way with 33 points. Brandon Rush had 21, and Sherron Collins 14 for the Jayhawks, who improved to 21-4 overall on the season and 8-2 in Big 12 play. They'll travel to take on Colorado Wednesday night in Boulder.
Update #9: 3:56, second half, KU leads 85-70
COLUMBIA, Mo. - Darryl Butterfield continued Missouri's run with a three-pointer from the corner to slice the Jayhawk lead to 12, but Julian Wright became the first Jayhawk this season to top the 30-point mark on an inside two in which he also drew a foul on Butterfield. The free throw gave him 31 points on the day, and he then followed it with a block of Stefhon Hannah out of bounds on the other end.
Hannah, though, came back with a three, with just over six minutes left on the clock. Sherron Collins, though, again sucked the wind out of Mizzou Arena with an acrobatic layup inside. Kalen Grimes answered with a tip-in of a Hannah miss. Hannah then grabbed the back of Russell Robinson's jersey, sending him to the line in the double bonus. Robinson put away one of two, and Julian Wright grabbed the offensive rebound on the second one. He kicked it out, and the ball found the hands of Sherron Collins, who drove hard and got himself to the line as well. Collins' two free throws gave him 14 points on the day and KU an 83-68 lead.
Keon Lawrence scored on a runner, but Brandon Rush matched it with a layup off the flat back of the iron, pushing his point total on the day to 19.
Update #8: 7:52, second half, KU leads 75-60
COLUMBIA, Mo. - Julian Wright hit the free throw, and off of a Keon Lawrence missed three, the rout was on, as Sherron Collins took a long feed for an easy layup, putting KU up by 23 points.
Wright scored again, nearing the 30-point barrier with points Nos. 27 and 28, and a Kalen Grimes turnaround jumper to follow it up hardly mattered, as KU is now all but in cruise control.
Matt Lawrence became the third Tiger, joining Hannah and Grimes, in double figures by hitting a three-pointer and giving himself 11 points, but Sherron Collins came right back by getting to the free throw line along with a dashing layup down the lane. He missed the free throrw, and Grimes matched it by drawing a foul with a fadeaway jumper. He hit it, tying him with Hannah for a team high at 14 points.
Matt Lawrence scored again, as Missouri again applied some pressure in the full court set. KU came right back down and turned it over again, this time with Sherron Collins trying to squeeze the ball in to Brandon Rush with a bullet pass. Stefhon Hannah came back to hit a two, pulling the Tigers within an attainable 15-point margin. A timeout was called on the floor after Russell Robinson floated a pass out of bounds over Julian Wright's head, the crowd again awakening.
Update #7: 11:18, second half, KU leads 68-48
COLUMBIA, Mo. - Kalen Grimes missed after backing down Darrell Arthur off the timeout, but after a Darnell Jackson defensive board, the ball was turned back over to Missouri, and Stefhon Hannah hit an awkward two in transition. J.T. Tiller then got to the line for the Tigers after a blocked shot on the KU end. He hit one of two, making it a 12-point game.
Julian Wright topped the 20-point barrier for the third time as a sophomore after hitting a bank shot off of a ball screen assist from Sherron Collins. It gave him 21 on the night and KU again a 14-point edge. Collins then got another assist on what was actually a mistake pass to Brandon Rush, but wound up as a three-pointer from the top of the key, giving Rush 15 on the day.
Missouri was put in the bonus on its next possession, however, as Mario Chalmers' foul on Kalen Grimes was whacked on the way up to the basket through the lane. He hit both of his free throws with 14:03 left before heading to the bench.
Darryl Butterfield then scored his first two points of the second half after KU turned the ball over under its own hoop. But KU then broke the Mizzou press yet again, before Brandon Rush hammered home a Sherron Collins lob pass with two hands before exercising a nearly full pull-up on the rim.
Wright then threw down an alley-oop of his own off of a Russel Robinson feed in transition, bumping KU's lead to 64-47 and forcing Mike Anderson to whistle for a timeout at the 12:18 mark.
Leo Lyons drove hard and got to the line out of the timeout, hitting one of two free throws, but KU came back down on offense again with flash, this time with Darnell Jackson taking a feed inside from Julian Wright for two. Then, Wright dropped in two on a lob from Robinson and was fouled in the process, giving him a career-high 25 points with 11:18 left to play and a free throw still to come.
Update #6: 15:55, second half, KU leads 55-40
COLUMBIA, Mo. - Mario Chalmers tried a lob pass to Sasha Kaun right out of the half, but Kaun couldn't throw it down and had to try a layin, which fell off the outside of the hoop.
Keon Lawrence tried to match his three which came late in the first half, but missed long off the iron, and Darrell Arthur came back with his second field goal of the game off the glass from close range. Stefhon Hannah took a feed from Kalen Grimes to match the two points on the other end, keeping Mizzou within 14.
After a travel call on Mario Chalmers, Matt Lawrence hit a two on the baseline, and Julian Wright tried to answer with an ill-advise three, which missed. Missouri turned the ball back over, though, and Russell Robinson angled his body to go up strong for two points in transition - his first two of the day.
Stefhon Hannah answered with a three, and then after another KU empty possession, Hannah drew a foul on Russell Robinson, which was the team's third in the first 3:17 of the second half. MU couldn't score off of it, though, and Julian Wright scored yet again underneath, giving him a game-high 17 points.
Wright then followed his own miss after a Darrell Arthur steal and on the put back attempt was fouled. He got to the line and scored two more, putting KU up 55-40.
Update #5: Halftime, KU leads 47-33
COLUMBIA, Mo. - Darryl Butterfield hit a runner to give the Mizzou crowd something to be excited with, and Stefhon Hannah followed it with a tough, skipping layup inside off of a turnover, forcing Bill Self to whistle a quick timeout having seen his team's lead sliced to eight points.
Brandon Rush inbounded the ball out of the timeout into a full court press, which KU broke and ultimately ended up with Rush hitting a three in transition, giving him 12 points on the afternoon. The Jayhawks then forced a turnover on Kalen Grimes, and Grimes was then the victim of a poster-worthy, two-handed slam by Julian Wright coming down the baseline on the right side. Wright missed the free throw to go with it, but it pushed KU's lead to 13 points. Darnell Jackson then picked off a pass headed in for Grimes, and he followed a Sherron Collins miss on the other end with his first field goal of the game.
The Missouri bench was then whistled for a technical foul, thanks to Mike Anderson being in the ref's ear, and it put Mario Chalmers at the line for two. Chalmers hit both to put the Jayhawks up 45-28. KU has now outscored Missouri 37-12 since trailing early in the first half, 16-8.
Missouri called a timeout with less than a minute to go in the half, and out of it, the full court press forced a pair of KU turnovers. The first brought a Keon Lawrence layup from close range, and the second saw Lawrence hit a three. Darnell jackson was credited with a deuce after it, though, on a missed Julian Wright shot that was accidentally tipped in by Butterfield.
KU brought a 47-33 lead into halftime, spearheaded by 15 points from Julian Wright and 12 from Brandon Rush.
Update #4: 3:05, first half, KU leads 36-24
COLUMBIA, Mo. - Julian Wright hit one of two free throws after the break to push KU's run to 17-1, and give the Jayhawks an eight-point lead. Mizzou equaled KU's possession when Leo Lyons hit one of two free throws after getting fouled on his way down the baseline.
Wright scored his fourth field goal of the night after blocking a Keon Lawrence shot on the defensive end, and after Lyons aired a three-pointer, Mario Chalmers threw Wright a long lob, which Wright had to throw in off the glass after getting bothered while in mid-air. It extended KU's run to 21-8, and gave the Jayhawks a comfortable 11-point lead at 29-18.
Stefhon Hannah missed a three-pointer just under the six-minute mark, drawing the Tigers' stretch without a field goal to nearly eight full minutes. Brandon Rush came down to hit a three, extending KU's run even further, now at 24-2.
Kalen Grimes tipped in a Marshall Brown miss with roughly five minutes to go in the half and finally end a poor stretch for the Tiger offense, but the celebration was short-lived, as Rush came right back down to drop in a runner from close up.
Stefhon Hannah hig two free throws to keep Missouri fighting back, but Rush again found a crease in the lane soon thereafter. His runner this time rimmed out, but Julian Wright's follow-up dunk didn't, giving him a game-high 13 point and keepking KU's lead at 14 points.
Marcus Watkins hit a runner in the lane before the game went to its final break of the first half, with KU still leading by 12.
Update #3: 7:38, first half, KU leads 24-17
COLUMBIA, Mo. - Marshall Brown went hard to the rack right out of the timeout, but his shot was erased inside on the way up. Darrell Arthur answered with a fadeaway two off the right block, extending KU's run to 10-0.
After an empty possession going each way, Sherron Collins drew the ninth team foul on Mizzou at the 9:53 mark, giving KU its first chance to benefit from the early bonus. He hit both free throws, putting KU ahead 20-16.
J.T. Tiller missed a three on the other end, and Marshall Brown missed the put back, but was fouled in the process. He put away one of two free throws, but ended a nasty Mizzou drought. Collins responded with his first field goal of the game - a runner straight down the lane. Collins then scored again after picking off an errant pass off a Julian Wright miss in transition, making it a 16-1 KU run.
Adding some insult to Missouri's field goal-less stretch, Matt Lawrence saw a clearing to drive to the hoop, but the shot was swatted away by Russell Robinson, going in the books as his 12th blocked shot of the year.
The Missouri crowd continued to grow restless as Marshall Brown was called for a foul after clipping Julian Wright once the sophomore pulled down yet another KU defensive board. The foul put KU in the double bonus.
Update #2: 11:13, first half, game tied, 16-16
COLUMBIA, Mo. - Grimes made the free throw to put MU up by five, and the Tigers then showed some fullcourt press. It resulted in Russell Robinson drawing a foul, keeping the ball with KU. Darrell Arthur, though, airballed a fadeaway jumper, and Julian Wright threw the rebound out of bounds, giving Missouri possession yet again.
Stefhon Hannah then got himself into the scoring column for the first time, drawing up a three from the same spot Lawrence hit from for his first trey, putting Missouri up by eight. The Tigers then forced a turnover on the defensive end, but the offensive possession produced nothing, and Arthur drew a foul on Leo Lyons in transition. Julian Wright scored inside on the inbounds pass to end KU's offensive drought.
KU built a little momentum when Lyons was called for an over-the-back call against Darrell Arthur while trying to rebound a Keon Lawrence three miss. Wright scored again, this time following a Sherron Collins missed three, pulling KU to within four at 16-12 approaching the 12-minute mark. Missouri was again whistled for a foul, the seventh on the team, on the ensuing possession, this time in the form of a charge on Lawrence, negating a tough layup.
KU broke the press quickly, and Brandon Rush stormed up the floor, dishing it late to Darnell Jackson, who was fouled while wedging the ball between the rim and the backboard. He went to the line and hit two, giving KU six unanswered points.
Another Hannah miss gave KU a chance for the tie, which came with Darnell Jackson putting back a Mario Chalmers miss and tying the game, 16-16.
Update #1: 14:58, first half, MU leads 12-8
COLUMBIA, Mo. - Sasha Kaun called for the ball off the opening tip and missed a baby hook from close range. Mizzou's Marshall Brown came right back to hit an 18-foot jumper from the left wing, giving the Tigers the early advantage.
Julian Wright on KU's next possession was called for a travel while backing down Brown, but Missouri turned the ball right back over, and Mario Chalmers skied in for a one-handed slam in the open court, tying the score 2-2.
KU continued to pen the game strong defensively, this time with Kaun swatting a Kalen Grimes look inside. Brandon Rush came back down to hit a long two. Chalmers had a chance to put KU up by four, but was obstructed while going up for a layup in the open floor after another steal.
The game's tempo slowed with a series of missed jumpers, until Rush was able to get to the stripe after drawing a foul on Grimes in the lane. Rush hit both free throws to put KU up 6-2.
Matt Lawrence awoke the Mizzou Arena crowd just over three minutes in, getting his first look of the afternoon from downtown and cashing a long three, pulling Mizzou within one point. But Julian Wright came back with two of his own from the right block. Kalen Grimes' first two points of the day inside in difficult fashion kept it a one-point game.
Grimes then ripped down a defensive board after Kaun rifled a close-range shot off the iron, and Lawrence's second three of the game put Mizzou back on top, 10-8.
Chalmers tried to respond with a three of his own, but it rimmed out. Missouri did the same, but a KU turnover led to Kalen Grimes soaring and dunking well over Sasha Kaun's head and drawing a foul with it, putting Missouri up 12-8.
COLUMBIA, Mo. - It's one thing to take the show on the road in the Big 12 conference. For Kansas University, it's a whole other story when it heads to Columbia, Mo. And the Jayhawks should expect nothing short of hostility today at Mizzou Arena, when the No. 9 Jayhawks take on Missouri at 2:45 p.m.
KU is 1-for-1 this week as far as knocking off rivals goes, having throttled Kansas State, 97-70, Wednesday night at Allen Fieldhouse. It broke a second place tie between the Jayhawks and Wildcats in the Big 12 standings, and bumped KU to 20-4 overall and 7-2 in conference play.
The Tigers, 14-8 overall and 3-6 in the Big 12, already gave the Jayhawks one test this season, a game which KU won at home, 80-77 on Jan. 15. Since then, Mizzou has gone 3-2, including Tuesday's 77-55 blasting of Iowa State up in Ames.
The biggest concern for the Jayhawks, just as it was in the first meeting between the two teams, will be junior guard Stefhon Hannah, who had 15 points and was a defensive pest in the first meeting. In that game, Mizzou sophomore Matt Lawrence led the with 19 points, including four three-pointers, and one long ball which fell short of the rim as time expired.
Missouri hopes for better fortunes today on its homecourt, as the Tigers have taken the Jayhawks out each of the last two years in Columbia.