LAWRENCE, Kan. – KJ Adams scored in the paint to break the tie with less than 12 seconds left and No. 2 of Kansas held off No. 14 Iowa State 62-60 on Saturday.
Iowa State had one last chance to win, but Caleb Grill’s three-pointer threw the ball into the siren.
“I don’t know if having so many close games in the postseason will help,” Kansas Coach Bill Self said. any game, thinking it will be easy.”
“Today was Iowa, then we’re in K State, 11th, TCU, Baylor, Kentucky, then K State, and right after that, Iowa. It’s a joke. There will be no (easy) games,” he said.
The Jayhawks celebrated 125 years of Kansas basketball with over 160 former Allen Fieldhouse players, coaches and staff. They saw it happen until the last second.
“Caleb rode up for a big hit and he didn’t fall,” Iowa State coach T.J. Otzelberger said.
“Merit to them. They were able to make one more game in a really good game to come out on top,” he said.
Kansas (16-1, 5-0 Big 12) led Grady Dick with 21 points. Jalen Wilson had 16 points and 11 rebounds while Adams had 15 points.
Gabe Kalscher scored 23 points with the Cyclones (13-3, 4-1). Osun Osunniyi scored 14 points.
The second half was endless and neither team was able to increase their lead by more than four points in the second half. There were 12 lead changes in the second half alone.
Kansas took a 59–57 lead with just under two minutes left after Wilson pulled back.
After a miss from Iowa State, Kansas ran 25 seconds ahead of shot time before hitting a contested 3-pointer. Several offensive rebounds saw Adams hit two free throws with 1:03 left, and he made one for a three-point lead.
Kalscher equalized with a 3-pointer with 35 seconds left. Adams then rushed inside to give Kansas the lead.
“It just sort of played out. Luckily I took the shot,” Adams said.
He himself was pleased with the result.
“It was a high-level game,” Self said. “You saw two teams that enjoyed playing such a tight game in such an atmosphere. No light baskets. I wish we filmed it better. But they are good.”
“The building was great. Winning with so many guys back for the reunion will definitely make tonight a lot more enjoyable,” he said.
Kansas went 12-0 ahead to seize control early on, but Iowa State rallied and closed out before 29:28 for half time. The Jayhawks only landed 22 shots before halftime and were unable to rebound on offense in the first half.
Iowa State: Cyclones should be a factor in the Big 12 race to the end. They can win on the road, and the Hilton Coliseum is one of the toughest conference venues.
Kansas: The Jayhawks always get the best shot from their opponents, but often it doesn’t matter. Head coach Bill Self has as many conference titles as home losses in 20 seasons in Kansas.
Iowa State: The Cyclones return home to face No. 10 Texas on Tuesday night.
Kansas: The Jayhawks will play their first game of the season against Kansas State on Tuesday night in Manhattan, Kansas.
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