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Jayhawks Survive Oklahoma 85-78

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Sooners erase a 20-point deficit but Kansas retaliates to win.

Jamie Squire/Getty Images

After opening up an early 8-2 lead, KU went on a tear in the first half and jumped all over Oklahoma by a score of 33-13 by the 9:38 mark of the first half.  Kansas coasted into halftime with a 51-32 lead.

Turns out, that's when things really got exciting.  Here's what KU's first 9 possessions after halftime looked like:

Frank Mason missed jumper

Kelly Oubre missed jumper

Perry Ellis missed 3-pt jumper

Kelly Oubre missed layup

Kelly Oubre missed 3-pt jumper

Perry Ellis missed jumper

Kelly Oubre missed dunk

Devonte Graham missed layup

Cliff Alexander turnover

That's 0/8 with a turnover.  Oubre finally stemmed the bleeding a bit by scoring KU's first field goal of the second half at the 14:54 mark.  By that point, Oklahoma had shaved the 19-point KU halftime lead into a 10-point KU lead - and the Sooners run would continue.  The Jayhawks continued to struggle from the floor, and Oklahoma closed it to 54-50 before Bill Self called his second timeout of the half.

The timeout seemed to help, as KU finally began to answer OU's buckets with some of their own.  However, OU would eventually take a 64-60 lead with only 7:46 to play.  OU still led by two, 71-69, with 3:45 left in the game, but that's when Kansas woke up.  A Brannen Greene 3-pointer, a Frank Mason jumper, a Cliff Alexander dunk, and a Kelly Oubre jumper put KU up 79-74 with 1:18 left, and the Jayhawks would keep OU at arm's length and secure an 85-78 victory.

Kelly Oubre led Kansas with 19 points on 6/11 shooting.  Perry Ellis chipped in 16 while Cliff Alexander added 13 and Brannen Greene put in 12.  Buddy Hield led all scorers in the game with 26 on 7/19 shooting (4/13 from 3-pt range).

KU outrebounded Oklahoma 36 to 33, led by Cliff Alexander's 13 boards.  Kelly Oubre picked up 9 and Ellis added 8 more.

Wayne Selden, Frank Mason, and Devote Graham each had four assists.

KU shot 10/19 (53%) from behind the 3-point arc compared to Oklahoma's 8/25 (32%).  KU converted 17/25 (68%) at the free throw line versus OU's 18/21 (86%).

Up next for the Jayhawks, KU will travel to Austin, TX, to take on the Longhorns on Saturday, January 24, at 1 PM Kansas time.