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Dec. 18, 2004

Box Score

LAWRENCE, Kan. – Russell Robinson scored four points in the final 36 seconds Saturday night, allowing No. 2 Kansas to escape with a 64-60 victory over a South Carolina team that led most of the game.

The unranked Gamecocks (5-2), 17-point underdogs in their first road game, came out with a full-court pressure defense and seized an 11-0 lead over the fumble-fingered Jayhawks.

Kansas (7-0) had five turnovers and a blocked shot in its first six possessions, and did not get its first lead until Keith Langford fed Christian Moody inside to make it 54-52 with 5:03 to go.

Wayne Simien had 20 points and 11 rebounds for Kansas, despite leaving the game for about 5 minutes in the second half after injuring his right thumb. He returned with the thumb heavily taped.

The Jayhawks would have been the highest-ranked team South Carolina had ever beaten on the road. The Gamecocks’ previous best was a 72-66 victory on March 2, 1997, at No. 3 Kentucky.

South Carolina held a 58-57 lead when Simien, who had his sixth double-double, scored underneath to put Kansas on top 59-58 with 1:37 left.

Then J.R. Giddens rebounded a miss by South Carolina’s Antoine Tisby and Robinson, a freshman point guard, glided in for a layup and a 61-58 lead. Carlos Powell hit a short jumper to make it 61-60. Then, Robinson hit two free throws with 13 seconds to go and Langford hit one with 5 seconds left.

The sellout crowd knew it was going to be a tough night when Kansas freshman C.J. Giles rebounded Josh Gonner’s miss on a foul shot and dropped it into the bucket for a South Carolina bucket that put the Gamecocks on top 30-23.

Giles immediately was pulled from the game by coach Bill Self. He did not return.

Perplexed by South Carolina’s pressure defense, the Jayhawks had 16 turnovers and shot just 35 percent in the first half and were only 3-for-11 from beyond the arc.

Tarance Kinsey’s 3-pointer at the buzzer sent the visitors into halftime with a 33-25 lead.

The Jayhawks, who came in shooting 54.3 percent in their last five games, hit only 41 percent against the Gamecocks.

Giddens had 13 points for Kansas while Langford had 11. Powell had 13 for South Carolina, Gonner had 12 and Kinsey had 11.

AP Sports Writer