The Cowboys came up with a huge 86-67 win over the Kansas Jayhawks. This marks a third straight win at home over Kansas for the Cowboys. Juwan Evans led the charge by filling the stat sheet yet again with 22 points, 8 assists, 6 rebounds, and two steals. Jayhawks leading scorer Perry Ellis was held to just two second half points as the Cowboys comfortably ran away with this game in the second half. Cowboys fans stormed the court with just under a second left to play, the referees attempted to wave everyone off the court, but their slight resistance was futile as nobody was stopping this party from getting started.
This is the first time since Jan. 2 that #OKState is not trailing by double digits at half.— Mark Cooper (@mark_cooperjr) January 20, 2016
It was important to start fast for the Cowboys and not fall behind by double digits at halftime as they would often this season. The Cowboys did indeed start fast and led 43-38 at halftime. Sophomore guard Jeffery Carroll played a key part in the first half, Carroll scored all of his 11 points in the first half and made three of his four three-point shots in crucial moments. Senior forward Chris Olivier provided a spark off the bench as he scored six of his eight points in the first half.
Jawun Evans was special yet again on the national spotlight. Evans turned the ball over four times in the first half but kept his teammates involved early and often. Evans would eventually settle down and take over the game. Evans scored 13 of his 22 points in the second half as Kansas had no answer for him. Evans didn't need to score 42 in this contest because his teammates stepped up, he dished out eight assists on the night, a couple to senior guard Jeff Newberry who needed to step up his efforts to help the Cowboys win a game and snap their four-game losing streak. Newberry finished the game with 13 points, 11 of which came in the second half.
One of the key points going into this game for the Cowboys was to run Kansas off the three-point line. Coming into this game Kansas ranked second in the nation in three-point shooting (44.9 percent). Kansas connected on just 6-of-22 three-point shots good for 27.3 percent. Kansas was No. 6 in the nation in scoring (second in Big 12 play) averaging 85.8 points per game, the Cowboys held them to just 67 points. Perry Ellis had it going in the first half with 11 points, Ellis however was held to just two second half points and couldn't get into an offensive rhythm as the Cowboys made some defensive adjustments at halftime. Kansas shot 54.2 percent from the free-throw line, connecting on just 13 of their 24 trips to the charity stripe.
The Cowboys had it all going tonight. They shot 50 percent overall and 52.4 percent from the three-point line. They needed to come up big on the defensive end and they did just that. The Cowboys came out playing inspired basketball and this time they were able to do it throughout the game. The hard work finally pays off for the Cowboys. They had a chance to secure an upset win over Oklahoma, as well as a comeback win over Texas, leading into tonight's game, but fell short. This game was different. The Cowboys believed they could win this game from the start and played with confidence throughout the game. Hopefully this win turns the season around and sends the Cowboys down toward the path of success.