EditorsNote: Updates with Kansas opponent in final
Sophomore guard Malik Newman topped Kansas in scoring for the second straight day in the Big 12 tournament, netting 22 points Friday as the No. 9 Jayhawks downed shorthanded Kansas State 83-67 in the semifinals at Sprint Center in Kansas City, Mo.
Coming off a career-high 30 points against Oklahoma State in the quarterfinals, Newman went 8-for-14, with five of Kansas’ 11 3-point makes. The Jayhawks (26-7), who captured their 14th consecutive Big 12 regular-season title, will bid for their 11th crown in the Big 12 tournament against West Virginia.
The win was the seventh in eight games for Kansas, which is playing without 7-foot sophomore center Udoka Azubuike, the nation’s leader in field-goal percentage. Azubuike has a sprained MCL but is hopeful of being ready for the NCAA Tournament.
In his place, freshman Silvio De Sousa came off the bench and provided eight points and 11 rebounds. Sophomore Mitch Lightfoot started in the post and had eight points, as the Jayhawks claimed a 37-30 advantage on the glass for their eighth straight win against their in-state rivals.
Kansas State (22-11) played without All-Big 12 forward Dean Wade after the 6-foot-10 sophomore injured his foot in an overtime win Thursday over TCU in the tournament quarterfinals.
At the 18:43 mark of the first half, the Wildcats lost junior guard Barry Brown, who got popped in the right eye on a drive to the bucket. Brown did not return. He and Wade were averaging 16.5 points apiece. Kansas State coach Bruce Weber was hopeful each player will be available for the NCAA Tournament, assuming the Wildcats receive a bid as expected after placing fourth in the Big 12.
Sophomore center Makol Mawien scored a career-high 29 points to lead Kansas State, which trimmed a 43-30 halftime deficit to 53-51 with 10:12 left but could not get closer. It marked the first time in nine double-figure scoring performances for Mawien that the Wildcats lost.
Senior guard Sviatoslav Mykhailiuk, who added 12 points, became the fourth Kansas player to record 100 3-pointers in a season while canning 3 as part of nine first-half points. Newman scored 12 in the first half, which included runs of 13-0 and 21-4 by the Jayhawks.
—Field Level Media