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Saturday, January 12, 2019

Quick recap: No. 7 Kansas takes down Baylor for 73-68 win

Kansas guard Devon Dotson (11) scores over Baylor forward Flo Thamba (0) in the first half of an NCAA college basketball game, Saturday, Jan. 12, 2019, in Waco, Texas.

Kansas guard Devon Dotson (11) scores over Baylor forward Flo Thamba (0) in the first half of an NCAA college basketball game, Saturday, Jan. 12, 2019, in Waco, Texas.

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No. 7 Kansas put its recent road woes to bed at last.

The result was basically never in doubt, as KU cruised to a 73-68 win over Baylor Saturday afternoon in Waco, Texas. The Jayhawks took a 3-2 advantage at the 18:25 mark and never looked back en route to their second consecutive win since suffering 17-point loss at Iowa State a week ago.

Four players scored in double figures for Kansas (14-2, 3-1 Big 12) in the win. Senior Lagerald Vick led the way with 18 points on 6-of-10 shooting. Dedric Lawson scored 17 points on a 7-for-12 effort, while freshman Devon Dotson added 14 points by going 3-for-4 from the floor. Freshman Ochai Agbaji chipped in 10 points on a 4-of-5 clip.

Baylor (9-6, 1-2) led for just 19 seconds of the game following its upset win over Iowa State.

Here’s a quick look back at some of the action:

• The game turned when: The Jayhawks created some cushion during the final two minutes of the first half, which was a critical stretch.

With 2:09 left in the first half, Baylor pulled within two points to mark its small margin of deficit since the 16:56 mark. Kansas responded by producing an 11-3 run over the final 104 seconds to take a 10-point advantage at the intermission.

Vick and Agbaji hit consecutive 3-pointers, and then Dotson netted a layup. Following a score by the Bears, Vick drained a 3-pointer with two seconds remaining in the first half. KU was in control for much of the second half to hold off the hosts.

• Offensive highlight: Agbaji just makes this KU team look so much different. And it is just his second collegiate game.

Midway through the first half, KU coach Bill Self turned to a familiar set to take advantage of Baylor’s zone defense. The play was designed to get a dunk by a wing on a back-cut along the baseline, and Agbaji was given the honor of doing so.

Dotson lobbed it up to Agbaji, who flushed the ball with ease. Much like he did in his KU debut just a few days ago.

None by Shane Jackson

• Defensive highlight: Despite not having starting center Udoka Azubuike, Kansas demonstrated the ability to be imposing in the lane against Baylor.

The Jayhawks swatted six shots in the first 10 minutes. Entering Saturday, KU's season high was seven blocks and it was its first game of the season against Michigan State. It made things difficult for the Bears.

Baylor's first field goal came off an offensive rebound at the 9:33 mark of the 1st half. It trimmed the deficit to 18-4 at the time, as the Bears missed their first 15 shots of the game.

•Up next: Kansas plays host to Texas at 8 p.m. Monday.

Comments

Bryce Landon 2 months, 1 week ago

Me during this game:

First 11 minutes of the first half: We're making rugs out of the Bears! Next 7 minutes of the first half: Holy crap, we're about to blow a 16-point lead! Last 2 minutes of the first half and first 16 minutes of the second half: Now this is the Jayhawk basketball I know and love! Last 4 minutes of the second half: WAKE THE F*** UP, JAYHAWKS!!!

I'm more relieved than happy that we won, because that was a weak finish by the Jayhawks. I guess they decided to mail it in the last four minutes, and it nearly turned into a meltdown bigger than Northern Iowa's collapse against Texas A&M in the 2016 NCAA Tournament. I don't remember what the all-time KU record is for largest lead blown in a loss, but this one would have ranked up there if we'd blown it. Clearly these guys didn't learn jack from their collapse at Arizona State, or they would have maintained the intensity in the final four minutes of this game.

However, credit where credit is due, and huge props to LaGerald Vick for breaking out of his funk and getting hot again from 3. We need him to have more games like that if (A) we want to win the Big 12 and (B) make a deep run in the NCAA Tournament. Also, it's great to see Ochai Agbaji continue to make the most of his playing time. The more he develops, the better our chances of winning the games that matter in March. So far, Coach Self's decision to burn his redshirt is paying off quite well!

And hey, we are 3-1 in the Big 12, a game back of Texas Tech, and we are in a better position standings-wise to repeat as league champs than we would be if we had lost. We gotta handle our business because we can't count on the Red Raiders to do us any favors.

Oh, and screw those incompetent refs at the Duke-Florida State game who dragged the last five seconds of that game into five minutes and made us miss the first 6-7 minutes of our game! How hard is it to figure out how much time to put on the clock after an out-of-bounds call? Come on, NCAA, get some guys who are actually good at their job to do the job!

Dane Pratt 2 months, 1 week ago

I'm guessing you'd have to go back to the Ted Owens era to find a blown lead of comparable numbers. That's what happens when you play to keep from losing instead of playing to win.

Barry Weiss 2 months, 1 week ago

wow, checked the score at church, we were up 20 with less than 5 minutes left, we must have collapsed down the stretch. still good to take the road win and have the 3 ball going in again.

Steve Zimmerman 2 months, 1 week ago

Defense is not that bad, except when we let one bear alone dunking freely and still not much of boxing out. Lawson should've got more and-ones, he's still our lethal weapon down low. Garrett should no longer be in passive-o mode, can't finish easy layup but keeps on fighting. Dotson is still a road runner, good sign with 5 assists and dribble drives! Vick is sick again. Ochai should shoot more and guards should pass to him more when he is open. KJ should pull up more jumpers. Expect Grimes' raining more 3s. With 4-guard play, we should not see so bad Ast/TO ratio in every game. We ran more screens, but not so effectively. Good win, nevertheless.

Mike Greer 2 months, 1 week ago

Those last 4 minutes were hard to watch. Most of the game there was defense, just not the last stretch.

Dane Pratt 2 months, 1 week ago

Road wins don’t have to be pretty but the end of the game was a bit disturbing. They were coasting the last 4 or 5 minutes and got just a tad too complacent.

Shannon Gustafson 2 months, 1 week ago

KJ, Moore, and DMac all went in together, can't do that obviously.

Danny Hernandez 2 months, 1 week ago

Didn't help that Coach Self took he starters out at the 4 minute mark when Drew didn't respond likewise,

Bj Cassady 2 months, 1 week ago

Still say we lack the Killer instinct. Once you have the other team down, go for the throat. Who was Vick passing to late in the game? There was nobody around (KU) for 8-10 feet.

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