INDIANAPOLIS -- Quentin Grimes scored 21 points in his college debut and Dedric Lawson added 20 points and 14 rebounds to lead No. 1 Kansas past No. 10 Michigan State 92-87 in the season-opening Champions Classic on Tuesday.
The Jayhawks won their third consecutive in one of college basketball's premier events.
Michigan State was led by Joshua Langford with 18 points and Kenny Goins with 17 points and 11 rebounds. The Spartans are now 4-21 all-time against No. 1 teams.
The game pitted two power-conference preseason favorites against each other, and the finish was every bit as intriguing as expected.
After Kansas was in control for most of the game, the Spartans frantically trimmed a 10-point deficit to 90-87 with 34 seconds left. They had a chance to make it a two-point game when Devon Dotson missed the second of two free throws with 15 seconds left.
But Cassius Winston missed a layup for Michigan State, Kansas grabbed the rebound and Grimes sealed it by making 1 of 2 free throws.
It sure didn't look like it would be so close after Kansas withstood Michigan State's early three-point flurry.
The Jayhawks went on a 13-3 run midway through the first half to turn an 18-16 lead into a 30-17 advantage, extended the lead to 44-27 and never let the Spartans get closer than seven until the final minutes.
The Jayhawks demonstrated why they earned the top ranking. They dominated the post, used three-pointers to pull away and eventually found a way to close out the feisty Spartans.
NO. 4 DUKE 118,
NO. 2 KENTUCKY 84
INDIANAPOLIS — RJ Barrett scored 33 points and Zion Williamson added 28 in their first college games, leading No. 4 Duke over No. 2 Kentucky in the season-opening Champions Classic.
It was the most lopsided defeat in Coach John Calipari’s tenure at Kentucky and marked the eighth time in 10 meetings the Blue Devils have beaten the Wildcats.
Both Barrett and Williamson surpassed Marvin Bagley III’s program record for points by a freshman in his debut at 25. Cam Reddish added 22 points and Tre Jones had 6, giving Duke’s freshmen a combined 89 points.
The teams set a Classic record for most combined points, set hours earlier in No. 1 Kansas’ 92-87 victory over No. 10 Michigan State.
Keldon Johnson scored 23 points to lead Kentucky. Graduate transfer Reid Travis added 22 for the Wildcats, who had won all nine previous season openers under Calipari.
OTHER TOP 25 GAMES
Ty Jerome scored 20 points and De’An-dre Hunter had 13 and 10 rebounds as No. 5 Virginia beat Towson 73-42. Je-rome made six three-pointers for the Cavaliers, who were playing for the first time since they made history by becoming the first No. 1 seed to lose to a 16-seed in the NCAA Tournament. That 74-54 loss to UMBC last March, they insisted lead-ing into the opener, was the furthest thing from their mind. … Jordan Bone scored 18 points, Kyle Alexander added 16 and No. 6 Tennessee opened the season with a 86-41 blowout over Lenoir-Rhyne. The game against the Division II opponent counts on Tennessee’s overall record, but Lenoir-Rhyne counted the game as an exhibition. … Luke Maye had 24 points, Cameron Johnson provided a huge spark in the second half and No. 8 North Caroli-na avenged an upset loss to Wofford last year with a 78-67 victory. … Eric Paschall scored 26 points, Phil Booth had 17 and No. 9 Villanova opened its national cham-pionship defense with a 100-77 victory over Morgan State. … Oshae Brissett had 20 points and eight rebounds, and No. 16 Syracuse held Eastern Washington to 22 percent shooting while overpowering the Eagles 66-34. The Eagles’ output was the lowest since the Carrier Dome opened in 1980. … Marcquise Reed had 20 points and a career-high 13 rebounds as No. 22 Clemson reached 100 points for the first time in nine years in a 100-80 victory over The Citadel. … Carsen Edwards scored 30 points and made seven three-pointers as No. 24 Purdue opened its season with a 90-57 victory over Fairfield.
CENTRAL ARKANSAS 55
Sophomore Mark Smith scored 19 points on 5-for-8 shooting from the three-point line as Missouri beat the University of Central Arkansas in its season opener Tuesday night in Columbia, Mo.
After trailing 5-3 to start, Smith, a University of Illinois transfer, led the Tigers on a 15-0 run to go ahead 18-5, drilling 3 three-pointers to fuel the stretch.
Missouri’s defense took care of the rest, limiting the Bears to 33 percent shooting.
Despite Smith’s strong performance, Missouri’s offense was held to just 32.4 percent shooting in the first half. The Tigers improved in the second half, shooting 55.6 percent.
The offense missed the versatility of sophomore forward Jontay Porter. The Tigers lost Porter to a torn anterior cruciate ligament and medial collateral ligament in a scrimmage with Southern Illinois in October. The Bears, on the other hand, missed the presence of last year’s top two scorers, Jordan Howard (25.1 points per game) and Mathieu Kamba (13.8 points per game).
SAN DIEGO STATE 76, UAPB 60
Senior guard Martaveous McKnight had 29 points and 8 rebounds to lead the University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff on Tuesday, but it wasn't enough as San Diego State had four players score 10 or more points each in front of 11,077 fans at Viejas Arena in San Diego.
Trailing 36-29 at halftime, the Golden Lions scored the first five points of the second half to cut the lead to 36-34 after a Terrance Banyard dunk with 19:06 left, but that was as close as UAPB would get. The Golden Lions shot 36 percent from the floor, including 8-of-28 shooting from the three-point line, and hit 12 of 14 free throws.
UAPB outrebounded San Diego State 37 35, but committed 18 turnovers, which the Aztecs turned into 26 points. San Diego State also outscored UAPB 22-16 in the lane and 17-5 in second-chance points.
Senior guard Devin Watson led San Diego State with 20 points on 7-of-12 shooting from the floor, including 6 of 10 three-pointers. Redshirt sophomore forward Jalen McDaniels had 15 points and a team-high nine rebounds for the Aztecs, while senior guard Jeremy Hemsley had 14 points and sophomore forward Matt Mitchell added 10.
CENTRAL ARKANSAS 55, CENTRAL BAPTIST 34
The University of Central Arkansas held Central Baptist College to single-digit scoring in the first and third quarters Tuesday to win its season-opener at the Farris Center in Conway.
Senior guard Kamry Orr led the Sugar Bears with 20 points on 8-of-13 shooting from the floor, while junior guard Taylor Sells added 11 points on 4-of-6 shooting. Freshman guard Maegan Parham led Central Baptist with 11 points, including 3 three-pointers.
Neither team shot well from the floor as a whole -- UCA shot 32.8 percent and Central Baptist shot 29.3 percent -- but the Sugar Bears particularly struggled from the three-point line, going 1 for 17. UCA outrebounded Central Baptist 40-34, including a 21-11 advantage in offensive rebounds, while holding a 32-14 advantage on points scored in the lane, a 15-5 advantage in second-chance points and scored 26 points off 27 Central Baptist turnovers.
Sports on 11/07/2018
Print Headline: Jayhawks open strong behind Grimes, Lawson