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Knight's Red Raiders stall against Jayhawks

Compiled from Times wires
© St. Petersburg Times
published March 10, 2002

KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- Bob Knight didn't offer a complicated explanation for his worst defeat in four years.

"It was very simple," he said. "We were beaten by a much better team. We were tired from the beginning."

Drew Gooden had 16 points and 21 rebounds, and freshman Aaron Miles had 15 assists as No. 1 Kansas dominated from the start and beat Knight's resurgent Texas Tech 90-50 a Big 12 tournament semifinal Saturday.

Gooden's rebounds and Miles' assists were tournament records.

It was the biggest margin of defeat for a Knight-coached team since Indiana lost to Michigan 112-64 in February 1998.

"We could have let down," said Gooden, who by halftime had his 21st double double of the season. "But I've never won a tournament championship here and I want to win it all."

The Jayhawks (29-2) were up 83-35 with about seven minutes left, their biggest lead, when coach Roy Williams pulled most of his starters. Kansas has won 15 straight.

"Needless to say, we played very well," said Williams, who improved to 7-1 against Knight. "This was Tech's third game in the past three days and I think the fatigue factor just caught up with them. We were still pretty fresh, and everything turned positive for us, and everything turned negative for them."

Texas Tech (23-8) made 19 of 70 shots. Andre Emmett and Andy Ellis, the Red Raiders' leading scorers throughout this turnaround season, were a combined 0-of-15 from the field.

Tech won nine games last season and had one conference tournament victory in five years before beating Texas A&M and No. 14 Oklahoma State last week. Pawal Storozynski led Tech with 14.

NO. 4 OKLAHOMA 67, TEXAS 51: Aaron McGhee had 16 points and 15 rebounds as the Sooners (26-4) overcame a poor shooting performance. A win over Kansas could wrap up a top seed in the NCAA Tournament.

"I think you have to earn the right to be good," coach Kelvin Sampson said. "This team, back in October and November, had good parts. I think one of the strengths of our program is getting those parts to play the right way, to make themselves a team. That's the thing I've really liked about these kids. They've made themselves a great team."

McGhee held Texas center James Thomas to one point and three offensive rebounds, after Thomas had 11 points and 10 rebounds in Texas' 89-85 quarterfinal win over Missouri on Friday.

"I just tried to stay in front of him and limit his touches," said McGhee, who had 11 defensive rebounds. "He's difficult to control down low, but as long as you stay in front of him he's not as difficult."

Oklahoma limited Brandon Mouton, who scored 19 against Missouri, to one point. The Sooners forced 22 turnovers, had 12 steals and held Texas (20-11) to 38 percent shooting from the field (18-for-48).

"We played just awful," coach Rick Barnes said. "I wanted to leave. I wanted to get thrown out of the game."

Freshman T.J. Ford led the Longhorns with 18 but had two assists after 10 against Missouri.

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