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January 19, 2008

Free throws key to Tiger loss

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Over the final seven minutes and 23 seconds of their 76-70 win over Missouri, the Kansas Jayhawks did not make a single shot from the floor. But they didn't have to. In that same span, Kansas made 17 of their 45 trips to the free throw line, making 13 to ice the win.

"I've never seen so many block-charge calls in a long time," Mike Anderson said after the game. "The thing about it is none of them went our way. As a coach, that's kind of hard to swallow."

Anderson was asked by one reporter if all the whistles--the Tigers were called for 30 fouls in all--were a disruption for his team.

"That's a good statement. I like that statement," he said. "You made the statement, I like that. There was a lot of disruption."

Even the winning coach made reference to the parade of Jayhawks to the foul line.

"It wasn't very good," Bill Self said of Kansas' 28-45 showing at the line. "But I'm not going to complain about the number we shot. That doesn't happen very much on the road."

In the first 32 minutes of the game, Kansas shot just 53.5% from the free throw line. But in crunch time, that number rose to 76.5%. Kansas made them when the had to…and felt fortunate to escape Columbia with a win.

"I think we got lucky to be real candid," Self said. "They missed some shots that they normally would make."

Though they gave Kansas 28 points from the line, the Tigers were never down by more than eight points and had a chance to win most of the night, clawing back to within three points with just more than three minutes to play after back-to-back buckets from Jason Horton. But in the end, the Tigers just couldn't get the ball in the basket often enough. Mizzou shot 38% for the game and a woeful 5-for-28 from behind the three-point line.

"I missed a ton," said DeMarre Carroll, who was the leader of the Tigers' futile shooting effort on a 2-for-11 night. "I missed shots I know, you give me a chance right now, I'll make them now…It was just one of them nights. I had a tough night, Matt Lawrence had a tough night from three. We hit a couple shots, I think we would have won."

Instead, Missouri was left to lament another missed opportunity. The Tigers drop to 1-and-2 in league play as they head for Lubbock, Texas and a date with Texas Tech on Wednesday night.

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