The 2nd ranked Kansas Jayhawks overcame a double digit first half deficit, pulling away for an 82-67 win over Oregon State Saturday night at the Sprint Center in Kansas City.The Beavers got off to the better start in what was initially a cold shooting night in the meeting of 1 loss teams, and built a 5 point lead 8 minutes into the game.
Oregon State opened their advantage to 13 by midway in the first half, using an 11-0 run to go up 22-9, capped by back to back 3s by Olaf Schaftenaar and Tres Tinkle.
Kansas answered with 11 points of their own, interrupted only by another Tinkle 3, to get back within 5 with 6 minutes to go in the first half, but Tinkle answered with another pair of 3s, and the 11 point lead was still 11 at the break, with the Beavers up 39-28.
3 shooting was the story of the game, as Oregon State hit their first 7 3s of the game, including 5 by Tinkle, who had hit only 3 of the 15 he had put up earlier in the season. This while Kansas, which entered the game leading the nation in 3 point shooting percentage, connected on only 2 of 7 in the first half.
And it would remain the story of the game, as the Beavers then went cold from long range, missing 8 of their last 9. Meanwhile, the Jayhawks nailed 5 of 9 3s in the second half.
Schaftenaar sank the last OSU 3 of the evening a minute and a half into the second half, for a 44-34 lead, but Kansas' Wayne Selden sank a 3 of his own. That started a 21-4 Jayhawk run that took less than 5 minutes, and put Kansas ahead for good, as it would turn out.
Oregon State was getting themselves into foul trouble in the meantime, as Schaftenaar picked up his 4th personal seconds after making the 3.
The Beavers twice battled back within 3, the first time at 55-52 a minute later, on a pair of free throws by Jarmal Reid, and then on Gary Payton IIs putback of his missed putback.
The Jayhawks then took control of the game, this time with a 13-2 run that Carlton Bragg began with back to back baskets from point blank, which opened a 70-56 lead with just under 7 minutes left. Kansas made 11 of 12 shots during the game swinging run, and scored almost as many points in 6 minutes as they had the entire first half.
The lead was never larger than 16 points once the rest of the way, but also never got closer than 12 points, as Kansas kept Oregon State at arm's length the rest of the way.
Selden did most of the damage, with a game high 22 points on 8 of 12 shooting, including 5 of 8 on 3s, for the Jayhawks.
Tinkle topped the scoring chart for the Beavers, finishing with a career high 20, but only 4 in the second half.
As is nearly always the case, Kansas had 4 starters in double digits, as Mason added 18, with 8 of 12 free throwing a big part of it. Perry Ellis added 13, and Devontae Graham rounded out the double figures, with 10 points.
GP II, above, finished with a double double, with 13 points and a game high 11 rebounds, as well as 7 assists. But Payton's OSU record run of 38 consecutive games with at least 1 steal came to an end.
Reid was the only other Beaver in double digits, with 11, before leaving late in the game, needing to ice the foot he broke that kept him out of action until a week ago. It wasn't initially clear what Reid's foot or ankle injury was, or how serious it is.
Freshman Drew Eubanks just missed double digits, with 8 points, but Schaftenaar was no factor inside, with all 6 of his points coming a result of 2 of 4 shooting on 3s.
Stephen Thompson Jr. missed all 5 shots he took, and Langston Morris-Walker finished with only 2 points, though he did grab 6 rebounds.
The upstart Beavers early outside shooting success gave them a chance, but the Jayhawks showed why they are 2nd ranked, and expected to make a deep run come NCAA Tournament time, responding well with the balance and accurate shooting that made it impossible for Oregon State to hold on, in what was only the second ever meeting between the programs.
"We played with urgency about us on both ends in the first half," Oregon State coach Wayne Tinkle said. "We were executing plays, and we were the aggressors on both ends. But in the second half, they made a couple runs, and we unfortunately didn't have the same response."
"That's all part of the growth," Tinkle felt. "We didn't defend with the same purpose; it reminded me of the Valparaiso game. We didn't cut or screen as hard, and we didn't play with the same purpose."
Kansas improved to 8-1, while Oregon State slipped to 6-2. The Beavers will return to action next Friday and Saturday nights, against Cal-State Fullerton and Tulsa in the reborn Far West Classic in Portland.