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Stanford stuns Kansas to reach Sweet 16

Mar 23, 2014 - 9:21 PM St. Louis, MO ( - So much for the rematch of the 2003 national championship game between Kansas and Syracuse in the Sweet 16 of this year's NCAA Tournament.

After Syracuse was eliminated by Dayton on Saturday night, Stanford set up the surprising double-digit South Region semifinal matchup against the Flyers with a 60-57 victory over Kansas on Sunday.

Dwight Powell scored 15 points and Anthony Brown hit just enough free throws down the stretch for 10th-seeded Stanford (23-12), which upended New Mexico in the second round and will be the surprising higher-seeded team on Thursday in Memphis against 11th-seeded Dayton.

Brown's two free throws with 32.4 seconds to play gave Stanford a 58-51 lead, but Conner Frankamp drilled a pair of threes around one Brown free throw to pull the Jayhawks within two with 14.9 seconds remaining. Brown then made just 1-of-2 from the line to keep Kansas breathing, but Frankamp's hurried try from beyond the arc in the closing seconds came up empty and Stanford held on to reach the Sweet 16 for the first time in six years.

"Obviously we came up empty too many possessions," said Kansas coach Bill Self. "They're a smart team and they took their time and either got a pretty good shot or got fouled in the waning six or seven minutes, and that was the difference."

Chasson Randle added 13 points with six steals and Brown finished with 10 points for Stanford, which last played in the 2008 NCAA Tournament and also made a run to the Sweet 16, beating Cornell and Marquette before falling to Texas.

The Cardinal haven't reached the Elite Eight since 2001 and last advanced to the Final Four in 1998.

"We beat a very good Kansas team," said Stanford coach Johnny Dawkins. "I could not be any more proud of my guys and how they played for 40 minutes. I thought the energy, the effort, especially on the defensive end, is probably as good as I have seen it all season long.

"I was really proud of the way our guys stepped up when they made runs and was able to sustain some momentum at the end."

Tarik Black scored 18 and Frankamp finished with 12 on four makes from beyond the arc for Kansas (25-10), which was denied a fourth straight Sweet 16 appearance. The Jayhawks last failed to reach the regional semifinals in 2010 with a round of 32 exit against Northern Iowa.

It may have been the last game in a Kansas uniform for heralded freshman Andrew Wiggins, who was a non-factor Sunday. He averaged 17.4 points entering the contest, but scored only four on 1-of-6 shooting.

Kansas became the second No. 2 seed to be eliminated on the first weekend, as Villanova was beaten by Connecticut on Saturday in the East Region.

Powell's layup snapped a 49-49 tie with 4:43 remaining and Kansas came up empty twice before Josh Huestis' tip-in with 3:11 to play extended the Stanford lead to four. Perry Ellis hit two free throws to pull the Jayhawks within 53-51 with 2:04 left, but he missed with a chance to tie it soon after and two free throws by Powell again made it a four-point game with 56 seconds to play.

The Cardinal defense then got a tie-up in the lane and the possession arrow went their way, leading to one free throw from Brown with 43.6 seconds to play. Naadir Tharpe missed a contested driving layup for Kansas and Brown countered with two from the line with 32.4 seconds remaining to make it 58-51.

Stanford finished 18-of-26 from the line and went 0-for-9 from 3-point range, but shot 55.2 percent (21-of-38) from inside the arc and held Kansas to just 32.8 percent overall from the field.

The Cardinal opened the scoring with the first two buckets and led for virtually the entire first half. Kansas tied it a couple of times early, but Stanford built an 18-11 advantage midway through the first half and led 21-16 before the Jayhawks closed the period with an 8-1 run. Frankamp's three at the buzzer gave Kansas its lone lead of the opening 20 minutes at 24-22.

Kansas increased the edge to 28-23 just over a minute into the second half, but Stanford answered with a 13-2 run.

"I really felt that Stanford controlled the game after that," said Self. "They played better, made more plays, made the most of their inside touches. And we struggled scoring over their length."

Randle's steal and layup put the Cardinal in front, 30-28, and Kansas tied it on a Landen Lucas dunk immediately after a timeout, but Powell scored four straight and another Randle steal and layup made it 36-30 just over five minutes into the second half.

The Stanford lead reached seven a few times, the last coming at 47-40 with 6:54 remaining on a three-point play by Brown. Kansas then turned up the pressure and countered with a 9-2 run, tying it on a putback dunk by Ellis with 5:12 remaining.

Game Notes

Ellis finished with nine points and eight rebounds for Kansas ... Stefan Nastic scored 10 points for Stanford ... The Jayhawks were just 5-of-16 from 3-point range ... Kansas still leads the all-time series 8-3, but Stanford also won the most recent matchup, a 64-58 triumph over then-No. 1 Kansas on Dec. 6, 2003 in Anaheim ... The teams' previous NCAA Tournament meeting resulted in an 86-63 Kansas victory in 2002, also in St. Louis in the round of 32.