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Sunday, March 4, 2007

Takeover mode’ hits Chalmers

Kansas guards 'terrific'

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The best way to sum up Mario Chalmers' relationship with the three-point shot during the Jayhawks' 16-game Big 12 Conference schedule is that of a true labor of love.

For Russell Robinson, it was merely a flirtation.

Saturday, those respective unions each had defining moments in a 90-86 Kansas University victory over Texas in Allen Fieldhouse.

"We had open shots, and we had no choice but to take them," Chalmers said. "We knew the second half they couldn't be hot again, so we had to fight their run."

No one battled back against Texas' 54-point first-half splurge like KU's starting guards, who each set career-highs for three-pointers made. Chalmers was a perfect 5-of-5, while Robinson hit three of four.

"He was in a takeover mode today," Kansas coach Bill Self said of Chalmers. "And I thought Russell was really good today, too. Both our guards were terrific."

Chalmers hit three of his three-pointers in a first half in which the Jayhawks fired away in a more-than-efficient manner.

But much of it was an afterthought, as the Kevin Durant hype machine reached an all-time high, with the Texas freshman phenom pouring in 25 points, including five treys of his own, before halftime.

"We just wanted to key in defensively, because we knew they weren't going to shoot as well in the second half," said Robinson, mirroring Chalmers' sentiment. "We were ready. We knew that 12 points was nothing. The way they played defense, we could get back in the game."

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2006-07 March 3 KU-Texas Hoops

The two seemingly took it upon themselves to rectify the situation as quickly as possible.

The first of Chalmers' two second-half threes came at the 16:34 mark, pulling KU within one point for the first time since Texas took over the lead early in the first half. His second, 4:46 later, gave KU its biggest lead since being ahead 4-0 in the game's infant stages.

Both were part of KU's 17-4 run to open the second half.

Chalmers, who for his career is better than a 37-percent three-point shooter, has endured two dreadful stretches from long range during league play.

The first came right at its onset, after he had been KU's offensive rock for four straight games. He hit just one trey in eight attempts over KU's first four Big 12 games and later had another span of hitting just two in four games.

Robinson's threes also came as part of a season-high 17 points, while Chalmers tied his best output of this Big 12 season with 21 points.

Chalmers also made light of the fact that free throws again became an issue down the stretch, with key misses from himself and Robinson included.

But the whole body of work put KU one step closer to a bigger goal, and that can mask a lot of things.

"I think this shows that we deserve to be a No. 1 seed," Chalmers said. "We were down 14, we fought hard, and we pulled out the victory.

"I think this is going to help us get our No. 1 seed."

Comments

Displayhawk 15 years, 9 months ago

You guys deserve a #1 seed! Just take care of business in the first game so you don't become the first #1 seed to ever lose to a #16 seed! That would be a very bad legacy to leave behind!

Tom Pritchard 15 years, 9 months ago

"Chalmers also made light of the fact that free throws again became an issue down the stretch.." Well Just dig out the tape on Syracuse and play it for the team,and then comment on making free throws...

CasperCorps 15 years, 9 months ago

If Chalmers scores fifteen we win almost any game. If Russel Robinson scores ten we win any game. This team is so balanced its beautiful. Rockem Hawks!!

Robert Murphy 15 years, 9 months ago

Free throw shooting should be very mechanical. There's a little old jewish guy in Florida who has made several thousand in a row. Believe me he does not flip the ball up there differently every time. On the other hand, shooting free throws in the heat of battle is a different thing. The main thing is to get a good technique and concentrate, especially on the second one. Take your time on number two and make sure it goes in, not a different stroke on every shot. I noticed Kaun's technique seemed to be more consistent and tighter against Texas, not just flipping it up there and hoping. He actually looked like he expected it to go in, thus a better result. Wilt Chamberlain lost the NCAA title in 1957 by not converting free throws and never was very good at it throughout his career. To win the tourney we must make our free throws and I know we are capable of it, especially Robinson, Chalmers, Arthur, Wright, Collins, Jackson and most of all Rush - all have done well from time to time and any one of which could be in the game at the end. Concentration boys, play up to your potential and win one for all your loyal fans.

jaybate 15 years, 9 months ago

caspercorps,

i like this fifteen/ten rule. succinct. verifiable. i'll keep an eye on it.

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