Kansas Defeats Davidson 59-57 To Advance To The Final Four
March 30, 2008
In a game that saw nine ties and seven lead changes and had everyone in the stands on the edge of their seats,
An NCAA preliminary round record 57,563 fans saw
Despite the thrilling finish, both teams were ice cold at the outset. By the 14 minute mark the score was just 4-2 in favor of KU with each squad struggling to knock down open shots.
By the 10 minute mark the score was knotted at nine. Mario Chalmers hit a three to put KU up 12-9. But Davidson sophomore Stephen Curry, one of the biggest stories of this year's NCAA Tournament, answered with his first bucket on a three next time down the floor. From there, both teams started to find their comfort zone.
Chalmers finished the half with 11 points including 3-of-3 shooting from beyond the arc. Darrell Arthur and Darnell Jackson each pulled down five rebounds in the half as KU dominated the glass 22-13. After being held scoreless for over 10 minutes, Curry led Davidson and all first-half scorers with 15 points.
Heading into intermission, neither team seemed to have the upper hand after seven ties and three lead changes.
The first five minutes of the second half were essentially a continuation of the first with the two teams feeling each other out and the crowd waiting for one team to make its move.
Beginning at the 15 minute mark it became a battle. KU made the first move when it went on a 10-4 run punctuated by a fastbreak dunk by
With everyone in the arena holding their breath on every possession, neither team could gain a comfortable lead.
Trailing 49-51 with just over seven minutes left, Kansas went on a 12-2 run in which five different Jayhawks scored over a six minute stretch to take 59-53 lead with just over a minute to play.
True to form, Davidson did not give in and scored the next four on a Thomas Sander free throw and a Curry three. The trey by Curry with 55 seconds left were his first points since nearly the nine minute mark.
With 16 seconds left and the score 59-57 in favor of KU, Davidson had the ball and called timeout. With one second left, Davidson senior Jason Richards heaved a 3-pointer that sailed left of the rim to seal the Jayhawk win and
Chalmers and Sasha Kaun led
Rush, Chalmers and Kaun were named to the NCAA Regional All-Tournament team along with Curry (MVP) and Richards of Davidson.
It marks the first time in the history of the NCAA Tournament that all four No. 1 seeds advanced to the Final Four.