Thursday, March 17, 2016

Jayhawks fly by Austin Peay in NCAA opener

Kansas guard Frank Mason III gets fouled on a drive to the basket in a first-round NCAA tournament game against the Austin Peay Governors Thursday, March 17, 2016 at Wells Fargo Arena in Des Moines, IA.

Kansas guard Frank Mason III gets fouled on a drive to the basket in a first-round NCAA tournament game against the Austin Peay Governors Thursday, March 17, 2016 at Wells Fargo Arena in Des Moines, IA.


— No. 1 overall seed Kansas rolled to a 105-79 first-round NCAA Tournament victory over 16 seed Austin Peay on Thursday afternoon at Wells Fargo Arena.

The 105 points marked the most in an NCAA Tournament game since 2007, when the Jayhawks scored 107 in a first-round win over Niagara.

The Jayhawks, who improved to 31-4 with the victory, simply overpowered the Governors (18-18) from the start and never looked back.

KU led by 10 points, 10 minutes into the game and, at that point, was on pace to win by 40. That didn’t happen, of course, but the 26-point win served the same purpose. KU never had to sweat in this one and, more importantly, was able to give some key rest to the starting five of Frank Mason III, Devonté Graham, Wayne Selden Jr., Perry Ellis and Landen Lucas.

None of those five played more than 26 minutes in the Round 1 win.

Playing in his last NCAA Tournament, Ellis was his normal efficient and effective self, finishing with 21 points on 8-of-12 shooting.

Sophomore Sviatoslav Mykhailiuk, who entered Thursday with just 4 minutes of playing time in the NCAA Tournament under his belt, exploded for 23 points on 9-of-11 shooting to lead the Jayhawks. He hit 4 of the 5 three-point shots he attempted.

Junior big man Landen Lucas added 16 and also did a solid job holding down Austin Peay big man Chris Horton, who entered the game averaging 18.9 points and 12 rebounds per game and finished with 14 and 10 on Thursday.

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

• The game turned when: KU ripped off an 18-4 run midway through the first half to push a 12-10 lead to 30-14. Austin Peay never recovered and could not hang with Kansas from that point on.

• Offensive highlight: It was subtle, but still oh so sweet. With just under 14 minutes to play in the first half, Mason took a rebound off of a missed three-pointer by Austin Peay’s Khalil Davis and raced up the floor. About 5-7 feet before he reached the mid-court line, Mason floated a soft pass over the top of the Austin Peay “D” to Ellis, who caught the pass in stride near the block, went up on the other side of the rim to protect the shot and laid it in softly to put Kansas up 12-6. Later in the first half, with KU leading by double digits and starting to hit its stride, Graham found Selden for a transition alley-oop after another turnover by Austin Peay. Graham, moving at full speed, attacked the paint after a head fake and then lobbed a pass softly over his back shoulder to a charging Selden, who did the rest to finish the play and force Austin Peay into a timeout.

Podcast episode

Press Conferences & Post-Game Interviews

Bill Self on KU's depth and moving on in NCAA tourney

After his top-seeded Jayhawks blew out Austin Peay, 105-79, Kansas coach Bill Self discusses his team's depth and what KU accomplished in its first-round victory in Des Moines, Iowa.

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• Defensive highlight: Lucas volleyball-blocked a shot by Austin Peay’s Josh Robinson with 9:42 to play in the first half and Kansas leading 22-12. Lucas’ block came in help D as Robinson drove down the right side of the lane. As he rose to the rim to shoot over his man, Lucas came across the paint and slammed the shot straight down and out of bounds. Not to be outdone, senior Jamari Traylor did the same thing, this time swatting a shot by Chris Horton with his whole palm toward mid-court to get a KU fastbreak going.

• Key stat: Bench points. As if KU’s firepower in the starting lineup was not tough enough for the Governors to deal with, KU outscored Austin Peay 45-19 off the bench to turn a mismatch into a blowout.

• Up next: The Jayhawks advance to Saturday’s second round, where they will play No. 9 seed UConn, a 74-67 winner over Colorado during the day’s first game in Des Moines. Game time has not yet been determined.

— See what people were saying about KU's first-round victory during's live coverage

More news and notes from KU’s victory over Austin Peay

By the Numbers: Kansas 105, Austin Peay 79

By the Numbers: Kansas 105, Austin Peay 79


Steve Macy 6 years, 4 months ago

Landen Lucas, you can't stop him, only hope to slow him down.
Sorry, always wanted to say that. RCJH

Svi looked good, the game was uneven, no flow, too many whistles. Win and advance. Next!

Marius Rowlanski 6 years, 4 months ago

Good point about the whistles and the game flow. Also, lengthy periods time for reviews. I think they spent a good minute at one time to decide whether to correct the game clock by 2 sec. and in the end left the time as it was.

Possibly a different game - as they started to run together at some point. Vick, Bragg, Diallo and Svi played really well allowing the starters plenty of time to rest. Vick is a stud. Can't wait to see this guy when he starts gobbling up minutes.

Craig Alexander 6 years, 4 months ago

If Svi plays like that consistently then he might not be back next year. So smooth and efficient.

Suzi Marshall 6 years, 4 months ago

I was thinking the same thing. It would be a shame for him to head off to the league without Kansas fans seeing him play consistently.

Kent Richardson 6 years, 4 months ago

Svi is aggressive and will not stop shooting and scoring. Brannen has S(s)elf inflicted indecision issues and will be game silent more than he should. We need more out of both if we are to keep our roll going. I see touts saying UConn has better starting guards than KU and also, in a close game, UConn's FT shooting may be a determining factor. Hope we get different refs for that one. Ha

Marius Rowlanski 6 years, 4 months ago

There is a reason why we are a 1 seed and UConn a 9. Mason, Graham and Selden will give UConn's guards all that they can handle.

Michael Lorraine 6 years, 4 months ago

Day one and two conference teams have gone down. Not a good showing for the best conference in the country.

Mike Greer 6 years, 4 months ago

The only Big XII team I have going deep into the tournament is KU. I didn't pick the Baylor loss, but I didn't have them deep either. I hope UT proves me wrong, but I have them in church on Sunday. Big XII isn't the only conference to loose a game or two today.

Marius Rowlanski 6 years, 4 months ago

Pretty much what happens every year. The BIG 12 gets lauded as the best conference and then doesn't show up in the NCAA tourney. What a wasted comeback by Baylor. A lot of work wasted as they weren't even able to get a shot off.

Kent Richardson 6 years, 4 months ago

Very disappointing. Baylor, the Big 12's gift to Duke.

Michael Lorraine 6 years, 4 months ago

As the number 1 seed shouldn't the 8/9 game be played after the 1/16 so they have the advantage of seeing who their next opponent is?

Kristen Downing 6 years, 4 months ago

Hopefully Self can get the starters to play without fouling so much, cause the speedy guards of Connecticut are going to be way tougher.

Al Martin 6 years, 4 months ago

Yup, if you're inclined to worry, and I always am, that's the thing to worry about coming out of this one. 27 fouls! Yikes.

Dave Miller 6 years, 4 months ago

I think we can more than match up on their guards and I'm more than sure that down low on the blocks we take them to school.

Mike Greer 6 years, 4 months ago

They flashed a stat on the screen just a bit ago, KU is the only team to win a NCAA tournament game in each of the last 10 years! Rock Chalk go KU!!!!!

Kent Richardson 6 years, 4 months ago

In our last 4 games I think we have had 7 or 8 blocks end up being an offensive rebound for our opponents. Weird.

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