LAWRENCE, Kan. – A last-second layup by redshirt-sophomore guard Dajuan Harris Jr. with seven seconds remaining lifted the No. 9/10 Kansas Jayhawks past the No. 15/16 Iowa State Cyclones, 62-61, in front of 16,300 strong inside Allen Fieldhouse on Tuesday night.
Kansas improves to 13-2 (2-1 Big 12) this season, while Iowa State falls to 13-3 (1-3 Big 12). The Jayhawks improve to 105-15 following a loss in the Bill Self era, including 52-6 in games since 2012-13. Kansas’ 62 points were the lowest KU total in a victory in Lawrence over Iowa State since a 62-57 win on February 5, 1949.
With both teams coming off a loss, the two teams traded blows early on Tuesday night, with Iowa State having the upper hand in the opening minutes.
Following the under-16 media timeout, the Jayhawks fell into a slump, shooting 0-for-7 from the field coming out of the timeout, allowing Iowa State to take an early 9-7 advantage. Though, senior Ochai Agbaji would help the Jayhawks get out of the slump by connecting on his first 3-pointer of the night to bring the score to 10-9, in favor of the Jayhawks.
Iowa State would then rattle off a 10-0 run to bring the lead to 19-10, before junior Christian Braun ended the run with a 3-pointer of his own to bring the score to 19-13.
The Jayhawks would capitalize on several 3-pointers to shift the momentum in the first half, including another Agbaji 3-pointer that would cap off the scoring in the first half, as Iowa State led, 33-31. Kansas shot 46.2 percent (12-of-26) from the field, including 30.8 percent (4-of-13) from beyond the arc in the first half.
Kansas kept shooting to start the second half, as Braun lifted the Jayhawks to a 37-33 lead off a 3-pointer with 18:48 on the clock. From there, Agbaji took over by scoring seven-consecutive points for the Jayhawks, giving KU a 45-39 lead with 13 minutes remaining.
With the Cyclones closing in with just 1:48 remaining, senior forward David McCormack came up with a big rejection to give KU the ball back. Following a missed KU free throw, Iowa State’s Gabe Kalscheur to trim Kansas’ lead to 58-57 with 1:01 remaining.
With 36 seconds remaining, Iowa State struck again on a shot from the corner from Caleb Grill, giving the Cyclones the 59-58 advantage. On the following KU possession, Agbaji was sent to the free throw line, connecting on both free throws to regain the Jayhawks lead at 60-59 with 24 seconds remaining.
Seconds later, Iowa State once again connected on a jumper to put the Cyclones ahead, this time with only 16 seconds to go. Trailing 61-60 and needing a score, the Jayhawks put the ball in Harris’ hands, who drove the lane and connected on a contested layup with seven seconds remaining to go ahead, 62-61. The Cyclones then came up unsuccessful on a last-second shot, giving KU the 62-61 victory.
The Jayhawks were led by 22 points from Agbaji, who shot 8-of-15 from the field and 4-of-8 from beyond the arc. Agbaji was joined by Braun (13 points) and Harris (12 points) in double figures. Kansas shot 43.8 percent (21-of-48) from the field in the game.
The Jayhawks will return home to Allen Fieldhouse on Saturday, January 15 to host the West Virginia Mountaineers. Tipoff is scheduled for 1 p.m. CT on CBS.