Lahaina, Hawaii It wasn't always pretty, but it definitely didn't need to be as the Kansas University men's basketball team overpowered the smaller host school, Chaminade, 123-72, in the opening round of the Maui Invitational at Lahaina Civic Center.
The point total marked the most by a KU team in the Bill Self era and was among the Top 7 all-time in Kansas history.
After a slow start that featured a handful of KU miscues and a few signature three-point shots from Chaminade, the Jayhawks got things going with better play in transition and by knocking down a few three-pointers of their own.
Facing Chaminade's packed-in zone, KU's shooters had open looks all night. The Jayhawks (2-1) were selective about when they shot them, but, when they did, the ball went in at a nice clip.
Images from Monday night's game between the Jayhawks and Silverswords during the first-round game of the Maui Invitational.
KU finished the game 15-for-29 from behind the arc.
Sviatoslav Mykhailiuk led the Jayhawks in scoring with a career-high 18 points on 6-of-11 three-point shooting. Six other Jayhawks reached double-digits, with Wayne Selden Jr. matching Mykhailiuk’s 18 and Devonte' Graham going for 15. Frank Mason III scored seven of KU's first nine points and finished with 14.
KU coach Bill Self on 51-point win over Chaminade and the latest with Cheick Diallo.
Freshman forward Cheick Diallo did not play in this one. Instead, Diallo sat near the end of KU's bench in black shorts and a button-up KU shirt still awaiting word from the NCAA about his eligibility.
KU fans, who dominated the 2,400-seat gym in both numbers and volume, opened the second half by chanting “Free Di-al-lo” over and over.
Here’s a quick look back at some of the action:
• The game turned when: The Jayhawks hit Chaminade with an 8-0 run midway through the first half, turning a 16-15 lead into a 24-16 advantage. Ninety seconds later the lead was up to double digits and KU never looked back.
• Offensive highlight: There were plenty of all kinds of shapes and sizes, but one of the most highlight-worthy plays came late in the first half when junior wing Selden soared high above the back line of the CU defense and flushed a perfectly thrown lob with authority. Later in the game, Selden jumped on the other end of lob city and threw a perfect alley-oop to Carlton Bragg to finish a fast break and push the Kansas lead to 105-64.
• Defensive highlight: On back-to-back possessions early in the first half, KU picked up a pair of big-time blocks. The first came from Selden, who was beat backdoor along the baseline by Rohndell Goodwin but recovered to rise and stuff Goodwin's shot on the other side of the rim. On the next possession, Chaminade's Kuany Kuany drove to the rim and Jamari Traylor skied well above the rim and spiked the shot attempt to the ground like something you might see in a volleyball match. Both plays set the tone for KU's interior defense.
• Key stat: Three-pointers. We knew Chaminade would shoot — and make — a bunch of three-pointers on Monday night. But KU's shooting touch was not as certain. Didn't matter. The Jayhawks busted the Chaminade zone to the tune of 15-of-29 shooting (52 percent) and outscored the host school 45-24 from behind the three-point line.
• Up next: The Jayhawks advance to the championship side of the bracket at this year's Maui Invitational and will meet the winner of tonight's final game between UCLA and UNLV tomorrow at 9 p.m.
— See what people were saying about the rout during KUsports.com’s live coverage