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February 8, 2006The University of Kansas men's basketball team extended their winning steak to six games on Wednesday night, defeating Nebraska 69-48. The win moves the Jayhawks to 16-6 on the season and 7-2 in Big 12 play.
KU never trailed in the game and held the Huskers to just three points in the final 8:08 of the game.
"This is a mature, fun, focused group away from home," said Bill Self What excites me is that they don't get rattled on the road. These guys really seem to focus on the road."
Kansas was only up at eight at halftime, but outscored Nebraska 37-24 in the second stanza to seal the victory. The Jayhawks were led by 20 points - 16 in the second half - from freshman Mario Chalmers.
The Anchorage, Alaska, native nailed a career-high four three-point baskets to go along with four steals and two assists.
"Mario had the big answers for us tonight," said Self. "He had a couple of big 3-pointers late in the shot clock."
Kansas was also spurred by Jeff Hawkins' 11 points off the bench. The senior connected on 3-of-6 three-pointers and provided KU with a huge lift off the bench.
"The whole team bought into what coach (Bill) Self wanted us to do," said Hawkins. "We trusted in what he said, and we started to play better. Guys are starting to know their role.
"Every game, we want to press and make it tough for them to run their offense," he added. "We want to get them out of what they're used to doing."
After leading by eight points at the half, the Jayhawks maintained a double digit lead for most of the second half.
Up next for Kansas is a rematch with Iowa State on Saturday in Lawrence. The game is set to get underway at 3 p.m. from Allen Fieldhouse.
"We have to get ready to handle the pressure and the switching zones," he said. "We have to keep Curtis Stinson and Will Blalock out of the lane."