LAWRENCE, Kan. (AP) David McCormack hit a short hook shot with 12.8 seconds to go, giving the Kansas big man 17 points, and the sixth-ranked Jayhawks edged Oklahoma with fewer players 63-59 on Saturday. .
Ochai Agbaji added 14 points and Jalen Wilson had nine points and 11 rebounds, helping Kansas (11-2, 4-1 Big 12) avoid consecutive losses at Allen Fieldhouse for the first time since the first season with Roy Williams in 1988-89. .
The Sooners (6-4, 2-3), playing without Brady Manek and Jalen Hill due to COVID-19 protocols, took a 57-56 lead when Austin Reaves hit a jump shot from the free throw line with 2 1/2 minutes. to go. But McCormack scored on Oklahoma’s Kur Kuath to give Kansas the lead, and Wilson’s 3-pointer made it 61-57 with 1:26 to play.
Oklahoma had a chance when Kuath made the Alondes Williams fault with 37 seconds left, and coach Lon Kruger chose to play defense rather than foul. Kansas cut the shot clock to a couple of ticks before McCormack’s shot.
Reaves led the Sooners with 20 points and nine rebounds. Williams and De’Vion Harmon added nine points each.
Kansas was playing at home for the first time since Texas scored 25 points last week, equaling the most uneven victory by an opponent in Allen Fieldhouse’s 65-year history. And almost from the start, there were signs that the Jayhawks, still missing backup guard Bryce Thompson with a back injury, were having another tough afternoon.
They committed a series of early turnovers, including six from Wilson in the first half alone. They fought again from the 3-point line. They were even outscored on the boards, where Kansas has historically been tough to beat.
If it weren’t for the Jayhawks’ 11-0 run midway through the first half, the Sooners would have quite enjoyed the half-time cushion. But a pause of their own allowed Kansas to get back into the game, and Reaves converted Tyon Grant-Foster’s fumble in the final 15 seconds on a layup at the other end to give the Sooners a 33-31 lead.
Despite going eight and a half minutes without a field goal, the Jayhawks were still tied for 49 with just over 5 minutes remaining.
Garrett and Wilson, who struggled to get shots, began to get ahead at the decisive moment. Garrett’s layup gave Kansas a 56-55 lead, and Wilson hit a triple from the wing to make the score 61-57 and provide a cushion.
McCormack provided the baby hook moments later to seal the victory.
Oklahoma announced that Manek and Hill would miss the game about 45 minutes before kickoff. Elijah Harkless started in place of Manek, who is the team’s second leading scorer with 13.2 points per game. Manek and Hill, who are averaging 3.7 points off the bench, must undergo another series of tests before being allowed to return to the team.
Oklahoma: Reaves made 7 of 14 shots from the field, but almost everyone else struggled to find their shots – Harkless was 2 of 8 and finished with five points. The Sooners also got into foul trouble late in the game.
Kansas committed 16 turnovers that the Sooners converted into 17 points. They were also just 11 of 19 from the foul line. Both stats usually lead to losses, but the Jayhawks managed to make enough plays down the stretch.
UNTIL NEXT TIME
The Sooners return home to face TCU on Tuesday. The Jayhawks visit Oklahoma State the same night.
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Eddie is an Australian news reporter with over 9 years in the industry and has published on Forbes and tech crunch.