Graham's 27 lead No. 6 Kansas past No. 3 Oklahoma 76-72
NORMAN, OKLA. >> Kansas' Devonte' Graham stole the show from Buddy Hield.
Graham scored a career-high 27 points and did a tenacious job defending the nation's No. 2 scorer to help the sixth-ranked Jayhawks defeat No. 3 Oklahoma 76-72 on Saturday.
"I just tried to make every shot tough on him," Graham, a sophomore guard, said of defending Hield. "He still knocked down five trey balls. He still got his shots off. He had a good game. I just tried to lock up and play the best defense I could."
It was only the third time in Graham's career that he scored at least 20 points. He made 6 of 9 3-point attempts for the Jayhawks (21-4, 9-3 Big 12).
"All the stuff he did was big-time," Kansas forward Landen Lucas said. "He was a man today. He carried the team. We all just tried to do our part, and he finished it for us.
Kansas won the first meeting 109-106 in triple overtime on Jan. 4, despite Hield's 46 points. This time, Hield scored 18 of his 24 points in the second half, but he went without a field goal in the first half and made 5 of 15 field goals overall.
"I had good shots in the first half, and I wasn't able to put them down," Hield said. "They guarded me really well and threw a lot of bodies at me."
Graham scored 17 points in the second half to help Kansas keep pace.
"He was great," Oklahoma coach Lon Kruger said. "He made big plays when they needed them, especially when we had a little bit of a lead, and we couldn't get a stop — he probably scored two or three of those. Good player. Talented guy. Stepped up there and made key buckets for them."
Kansas notched its fifth straight win and snapped Oklahoma's 19-game home winning streak. The Jayhawks were coming off a victory over No. 10 West Virginia on Tuesday.
Isaiah Cousins added 21 points for the Sooners (20-4, 8-4), who fell out of a tie for the conference lead. Oklahoma matched a season-low by shooting 33.3 percent from the field. The Sooners, who entered the game leading the nation in 3-point percentage, made just 10 of 32 from beyond the arc.
"That's about as good as we can play defensively," Kansas coach Bill Self said.
Even with that, it almost got away from the Jayhawks.
Oklahoma trailed 73-71 and called a timeout with 32.1 seconds remaining. Hield made the first of two free throws with 25.3 seconds to go, and Kansas rebounded the miss.
Graham made two free throws with 19 seconds to play to put Kansas up three. Oklahoma's Cousins shot a quick 3-point attempt that missed, and Kansas' Jamari Traylor made the second of two free throws with 10 seconds remaining to put it out of reach.
Kansas ran out to a 20-6 lead as the Sooners made just two of their first 19 shots. Hield didn't score until 9:04 remained in the first half.
Perry Ellis committed his second foul with 4:51 left in the first half and went to the bench with the Jayhawks leading 32-19. Oklahoma closed the half on a 14-6 run to make it 38-33.
The Sooners shot just 26.7 percent from the field in the first half and made 2 of 13 3-point attempts, but they made 15 of 18 free throws. Kansas shot 53.6 percent in the first half but committed eight turnovers.
Hield's first field goal, a 3-pointer with 18:28 remaining, put the Sooners up 39-38. Consecutive 3-pointers by Hield put the Sooners ahead 52-48.
Kansas rallied to take a 59-57 lead on a 3-pointer by Wayne Selden Jr. with just over 7 minutes to play, and the game was close the rest of the way.
"Our guys kept working, kept clawing to get within reach, then made a good run there in the second half to get the lead," Kruger said. "But with the lead, we couldn't get a stop or two."
QUOTABLE: Self, on the adjustment against Hield from the first meeting: "After playing Buddy the first time, when we held him to 46, I thought the best way was to play underneath him."
STAT LINES: Ellis, who had scored at least 19 points in five of his past six games, was held to 10 points and did not score in the second half.
COURTSIDE: Oklahoma City Thunder coach Billy Donovan attended the game.
TIP-INS — Kansas: The Jayhawks did not trail in either of their previous two games, wins over TCU and West Virginia. ... Made just two free throws in the first half. ... Frank Mason fouled out with 14 points.
Oklahoma: The Sooners beat Kansas 75-73 last year in Norman on Hield's tip-in at the buzzer. ... Hield, Cousins, Ryan Spangler and Jordan Woodard have started 92 consecutive games together.
UP NEXT: Kansas hosts Oklahoma State on Monday. Oklahoma plays at Texas Tech on Wednesday.
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