Courtesy: KU Athletics
LAWRENCE, Kan. – Seniors Natalie Knight and Chelsea Gardner shined as Kansas completed its 20th-straight exhibition win, topping Washburn 78-58, Sunday afternoon inside Allen Fieldhouse.
The senior duo had a combined 41 points and 13 rebounds. Gardner, a preseason All-Big 12 First Team forward from DeSoto, Texas, finished just shy of a double-double with 20 points and nine rebounds. Knight put up a game-high 21 points to go along with four rebounds and three assists. Freshman guard Terriell Bradley scored in double figures as well with 10 points and one rebound. Although she was in foul trouble, freshman guard Lauren Alrdidge still managed nine points and three rebounds.
The Ichabods were led by senior center Honor Duvall who had 14 points and six rebounds. Junior guard/forward Emily Gamble made nine points and grabbed two boards for Washburn. Kansas held Washburn to 32-percent shooting from the field completing 20-of-62 shots.
To begin the game, Washburn made only one of its first eight shots. It was a similar story for Kansas as well making two baskets on its first six shots. Nearly four minutes into the game, Aldridge threw up a three-point shot that sparked a 6-2 Jayhawk run, which resulted in a 13-6 Kansas lead.
KU continued to widen its lead as the result of Bradley sparking a run of her own by putting up a shot in the paint. Kansas went 14-1 over the next five minutes and worked its lead up to 17, which was the largest lead of the half – 27-10. Over the span of the run, six Jayhawks chalked up points (O’Neal, Gardner, Brown, Knight, Aldridge and Morgan), while the team accomplished eight defensive rebounds in that time.
At the final media timeout of the half, Kansas was ahead of Washburn 31-16. Knight chalked up six points in the remaining minutes, including a three-point shot with just under a minute to play. The Jayhawks took a comfortable 37-20 lead going into the break.
In the first half Kansas outshot Washburn making 55 percent of its shots (12-22), but struggled maintaining possession of the ball with 12 turnovers allowing Washburn to net seven takeaways. KU held Washburn to 14.7 percent from the field after making only 5-of-34.
Aldridge completed a pass to Gardner in the paint, who put up a quick layup to start the second 20 minutes of action. Duvall then scored back-to-back shots for the Ichabods but the pair of Boyd and Gardner did the same thing for Kansas. With 17:33 left, Gardner missed the latter half of a two free throw shots. Boyd saved the possession by grabbing the rebound and passing it to Knight who made a layup, making the score 46-26.
WU went on a 6-0 run as the result of a jump shot by Gamble and kept the Jayhawks basketless for a couple minutes. To end the Ichabod run, Bradley was fouled in the act of shooting a layup and completed a traditional three-point play making the score 51-32.
Bradley sank a shot from beyond the arc with 11 minutes left to play in the game. Washburn then made another pair of back-to-back shots. With neither team able to start a run, Gardner pulled down a defensive board and completed a traditional three-point play at the other end, making Kansas’ first field goal since Bradley’s completion. Kansas still had the lead 63-43.
Going into the under-four-minute media timeout, Kansas led by 20 points, 72-52. The Jayhawks would undoubtedly keep their lead to end the game. But Gardner and Enabulele kept up the offensive efforts for Kansas chalking up two field goals in the final minutes. Kansas won their final exhibition game 78-58.
• Kansas’ win gives KU an overall all-time record of 46-9 in exhibition games and 40-9 in exhibition play inside Allen Fieldhouse.
• Sunday’s win over Washburn marks the Jayhawks’ 20th-straight exhibition win.
• Kansas now leads Washburn 10-1 overall and 6-0 in exhibition contests. The Jayhawks are 5-0 against the Ichabods under Henrickson.
The Jayhawks will open regular season play against South Dakota on Sunday, Nov. 16, at 2 p.m. inside Allen Fieldhouse.