NCAA News Wire

Kansas 62, Baylor 52

Alan Draper profile picture
Sports Editor
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KANSAS CITY, Mo.– The Kansas Jayhawks got 20 points and eight rebounds from guard Wayne Selden and defeated the Baylor Bears 62-52 in the semifinals of the Big 12 Championship on Friday night at Sprint Center. The Jayhawks reached the title game for the 11th time in the 18-year history of the postseason tournament.

Forward Perry Ellis added 11 points and six rebounds for the ninth-ranked Jayhawks.

The Kansas defense throttled No. 16 Baylor, holding the Bears to their season-low in points (the previous low was 53 at Oklahoma State Jan. 27) on just 32.8 percent shooting.

Baylor (24-9) was led by guard Kenny Chery with 20 points. Forward Rico Gathers scored 11 points and pulled down 13 rebounds for the Bears before fouling out with 43 seconds left.

The Jayhawks picked up where they left off in the first half, with a quick 9-2 run to open the second half, giving them a 35-20 lead with 16:18 left.

Baylor answered with a 10-1 run to cut the lead to just six points. But the Bears could get no closer than four points the rest of the way.

After failing to score from 3-point range in two of their last three games, the Jayhawks showed quickly that they were not afraid to take or make shots from long range.

On the first offensive possession, guard Kelly Oubre scored from beyond the arc. On the next possession, forward Perry Ellis copied Oubre, sinking a 3-pointer. Those were the only makes in the first half for Kansas, which was 2 of 7 from 3-point range.

Neither team shot well in the first half. Baylor made 5 of 25 from the field for 20 percent, including just 1 of 10 from 3-point range. But the Bears were 7 of 10 from the free-throw line.

Kansas was 11 of 20 from the field (37.9 percent) in the first half but finished with a 10-1 run to open up a 26-18 halftime lead. The 18 points were a season low in the first half for Baylor. Its previous low was 20.

NOTES: Kansas welcomed back starting F Perry Ellis, who missed the last two games with a sprained right knee. … Baylor was looking to become the 11th team from Texas to reach the Big 12 Tournament final, including the Bears three times previously. No team from Texas has won the tournament. … The Bears entered 4-23 all-time against Kansas but 0-2 in neutral-site games, both in the Big 12 Tournament in 2009 and 2012. … This is the 17th time in the 19-year history of the Big 12 Tournament that Kansas has reached the semifinals. The Jayhawks have won the title nine times. … The Jayhawks have won at least a share of 15 of the 19 regular-season Big 12 titles, including the last 11.

Alan is an expert gambling writer who works as one of the chief editors for Basketball Insiders. He has been covering online gambling and sports betting for over 8 years, having written for the likes of Sportlens, Compare.bet, The Sports Daily, 90min, and TopRatedCasinos.co.uk. His particular specialisms include US online casinos and gambling regulations, and soccer and basketball betting. Based in London, Alan holds an MA in English Literature and is a passionate supporter of Chelsea FC.

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