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Chalmers, late run help Kansas cruise to win over UMKC

Nov 12, 2007 - 4:28 AM LAWRENCE, Kansas (Ticker) -- Mario Chalmers scored 23 points and Russell Robinson added 19 to power No. 4 Kansas to an 85-62 victory over gritty Missouri-Kansas City in the first game of the Jayhawk Invitational on Sunday.

While the Jayhawks (2-0) never trailed, they had a much harder time pulling away from the Kangaroos than expected. Two of the three times these schools have met, the Jayhawks have won by more than 40 points.

Every time it appeared Kansas would pull away, the Kangaroos pushed back for the first 32 minutes of the game.

With Kansas holding a 43-30 halftime advantage and increasing the lead to 54-35 with 15:00 remaining, UMKC pulled to within 62-52 over the next 6:10.

Dane Brumagin and Jeremiah Hartsock combined for 10 of the 17 points over that stretch to narrow the deficit to 10 points, the closest they had been since 3:08 of the first half.

"Our intensity was always high no matter what happened on the other end; we were able to bounce back," Brumagin said. "We moved the ball pretty well, we got some open shots and a lot of different guys contributed. If a couple things go different, maybe it would have been a little different outcome. I thought we were able to respond when they attacked very well tonight."

However, the Jayhawks' depth started to wear down the Kangaroos. Chalmers and Darnell Jackson combined for 17 points during a game-ending 23-10 run.

"I think all five of us have to pull the rope until Brandon gets back," Chalmers said. "Last game it was Sherron (Collins), this game happened to be me and the first couple of games were our bigs. Anybody can step up for us."

"It was a good win," Kansas coach Bill Self said. "It was good for us to sweat and to play under some duress. We did poorly at executing, blocking out and free-throw shooting at times; still, we win by 23. But we have to get better."

Darrell Arthur added 13 points and grabbed eight rebounds for the Jayhawks, who will meet Washburn on Thursday in this round-robin tournament that also includes Northern Arizona, Arizona and Adams State College.

Five Jayhawks ended in double figures, something Chalmers expects to see more of until leading scorer Brandon Rush fully recovers from ACL surgery.

Hartsock and freshman guard Reggie Hamilton each posted 16 points for the Kangaroos (0-1), who will play Washburn on Tuesday.

"I thought they played very well," Self said. "They made shots for the most part and executed their offense. They turned the ball over some, but I thought they executed well, especially early. They did a really nice job. They will have some success."

    --- --- -----
    UMKC 30 32 62
    KANSAS (4) 43 42 85 FINAL

    Nov 11 10:06 PM


    Nov 11 8:56 PM