Lawrence Journal-World Sports Editor
University's laboring red clad basketball express came dangerously close
to derailment from the national title route in Kansas City's Municipal
Auditorium roundhouse last night.
Luckily for the Jayhawkers, however, the team their cow-catcher became
entangled with played poorer, more ragged overall ball than they did.
And so Coach Phog Allen's railbirds, champions of the Big Seven
Conference, managed to chug out a 68 to 64 victory over Texas Christian
University Horned Frogs, Southwest Conference kings.
The win in the first round of the NCAA Regional Tournament advanced the
Mt. Oreadans to the finals tonight at 9:45, at which time they meet St.
Louis, Missouri Valley Conference titlist, for the tourney trophy and a
chance to go to the NCAA semi-finals next Tuesday and Wednesday in
Seattle, Wash. Tonight's semi-final game will be televised by WDAF TV of
Kansas City on an area basis. Lawrence's Granada Theater will carry the
event for big video consumption.
Coach Eddie Mickey's St. Louisians were about as unimpressive as Kansas
in winning their way into the final fracas. The Billikens,
possessing a scorching fast game when they had to have it the most, got
by New Mexico A & M, Border Conference winner, 62-53, in an
earlier game, but the Missourians were extended in doing so.
In a preliminary to tonight's Bill-Jay title bout, TCU and the New
Mexico Aggies will meet to decide third place in the local Regional.
Chief engineer of the K.U. triumph, as he has been so often this year,
was All-American Center Clyde Lovellette, the towering senior
all-around ace. Clyde counted 31 points to break the old NCAA Western
Playoff record of 30 and tie the all-time NCAA tournament high of 31.
This output now gives the great Jayhawker, top scorer among the nation's
major college players all season except for one week, a 27.4 average on
685 points in 25 contests.
Assisting Engineer Lovellette was Fireman Bob Kenney, the superb
Winfield senior forward, with 17 tallies. Brilliant Bobby now has
hit 345 markers in the 25 Hawk contests for a 13.8 mean.
In addition to their scoring, Lovellette and Kenney kept the sluggish
Kansans moving throughout the contest with their fine efforts.
The boy who took top point-making honors for the game but outmanned
Horned Frogs came as a complete surprise to the fans, the opposing Jays'
and his own team and coach. Henry, Ohlen, a 6-7,217-pound, heretofore
obscure Froggie substitute, replaced Ace George McLeod in the first
quarter after McLeod had fouled out and netted 20 counters in a fine
display of hook shooting and tip-in work.
Pepperpot Johnny Ethridge, the nifty 5-8 1/2 Purple guard, got 10 points
to snare the runnerup spot for his club.
It was the 23rd win in 25 games this season for Kansas, which now has
copped 10 straight. It was the fourth loss In 27 starts for Coach
Buster Brannon's Ft. Worth Texans.
Up and down Kansas, generally playing far below the standard it set in
its terrific nine-game stretch that ended the regular season and
earned the conference crown, was behind at only one point in last
night's game. With 1:35 gone in the final period, the Red and Blue
enjoyed its largest margin of the evening, an 18-point, 62-44 spread.
But TCU suddenly came to life and scored 10 points while the Hawks could
muster none and make it 62-54 with only 5:10 left
in the fray. Then the Frogs went on to notch 10 more tallies while K.U.
could get but six. The end of the game found the Jays desperately
stalling to protect their four-point lead from the fast-closing foe. The
Christians outscored K.U. 22 to 10 in the last stanza
after it appeared the winners had the game salted away.
Guard Bill Hougland of Kansas, who limped badly when he played and sat
out the second half with a severe charley-horse, opened game scoring
with a side pot. The score was then tied three times until, with four
minutes gone, the Frogs took their only lead of the night on a free
throw by Guard Bryan Kilpatrick. At the 4 1/2 minute mark, Kilpatrick
hit another charity to make it 10-8 for his crew. But shortly after that
Lovellette banked in a turn shot to tie it up and, with 4:11 left in the
period, Forward John Keller netted a free throw to put Kansas ahead for
K.U. led 20 to 13 at the quarter, 34-24 at the half and held a 58-42
third-quarter advantage before fading in the final stretch and nearly
TCU lost three of its starters on fouls, but it was the departure of
McLeod, the team's leading scorer for the season, near the end of the
first quarter that hurt the most. The willowy pivotman had seven points
when he left the floor with only seven seconds left in the initial
Ohlen, however, was an outstanding replacement and turned in a good
overall job in addition to his 20-point contribution to the cause.
Other Purple cagers to commit five sins were Kilpatrick and Forward
K.U.'s only foul casualty was Bill Lienhard, the senior forward from
Newton, and there was some dispute about that. The official scorer had
him with five, but every book had him with but four. Lovellette got his
fourth sin chalked up with 6:17 to go in the third quarter, but managed
to avoid the clincher.
During brief stretches of the first and third quarters, K.U. flashed the
fiery form it did during the crucial pennant drive. But such explosions
were infrequent. The will and desire seemed to be there but, the sparkle
and precision were missing.
Neither of the four tourney teams were able to show really good
basketball, which shows the effect of a layoff such as they've undergone
since the end of the regular campaign.
St. Louis, the
Missouri Valley Conference champion, got off to a slow start but picked
up a bit of speed late in the first quarter to lead 10-13 at the end of
The Billikins relied
on a fast-breaking offense against the smaller New Mexico boys and were
able to overcome every Aggie challenge in the second quarter. The Billikens had a nice shooting percentage, to lead 35-26 at the half.
It was a slightly
different story in the third quarter, however, as New Mexico A&M, using
a zone defense, outscored the 10-point favorites, 19 to 12.
New Mexico's chances
were crippled early in the third quarter as Mike Svilar and James
Blevins, two of its regulars, went out on personal fouls.
Lou McKenna, who
scored nine field goals and four free throws for 22 points, was St.
Louis' top man as the Billikins brought their season record to 23-8.
James Tackett, New Mexico forward, and one of the finest performers to
play here in recent years, kept the Aggies in the running with eight
field goals and five free throws for 21 points.
The Aggies' fine
third-quarter bid was sparked by Tackett and Blevins to pull the score
43-all with 2:20 remaining in the period. St. Louis, which played
brilliantly at times and managed a 47-40 third quarter lead, had to give
everything it had in the fourth quarter before pulling to a substantial
57-51 lead with 3:14 to go.
St. Louis hit 24 of
59 shots for 40.7 percent. New Mexico A&M canned 19 of 60 for 32
City, March 22- All-America Clyde Lovellette hit a record-breaking 44
points as the Kansas Jayhawks scored an impressive 74 to 55 victory over
St. Louis University in the NCAA regional playoffs here (video).
Lovellette broke the record of 32 points set earlier tonight at Raleigh,
N. C. by Bob Zawoluk of St. John's. Lovellette, the nation's best
percentage shooter most of the season, brought his total for 27 games to
729 points. The 6-foot, 9-inch 240-pound giant from Terre Haute. Ind.
made six of the Jayhawk's first eight points as they trailed the
fast-breaking Missouri Valley champions 8-14 after the first 10 minutes.
turned on the heat late in the second quarter to get Kansas a 27-27 half
time tie, making 19 of his team's points. It wasn't much of a contest
after Lovellette and his teammates got going early in the third quarter.
Kansas built its advantage to 50-44 as the third period turned, but
before that it was obvious that the Jayhawkers would represent this
region in the N.C.A.A. finals at Seattle next week.
Lovellette made his record-breaking score on 16 field goals and 12 free
throws as the big man's overpowering efforts bested St. Louis' racehorse
Billikins opened with a bang and held the early advantage as Fred Kovar
and Ray Sonnenberg each hit for three field goals off the fast break.
But the Jayhawks solved the St. Louis offensive pattern midway of the
second quarter and, after getting ahead early in the third period, never
Louis then began making mistakes in its floor game and couldn't gain.
Dean Kelley, a clutch player in Kansas' late sprint to the Big Seven
Conference championship came through with 10 timely points.
Lillis, center, was St. Louis' high man with seven fielders for 14
Lovellette's 44 points were the all-time high for the All-American, who
established the Big-Seven record of 41 points against Colorado in the
last regular season game. He had 42 points in a non-conference game
against Southern Methodist early in the season. The big senior scored 16
of his 24 shots for a 66.7 percentage and had 16 rebounds in a great
overall performance. He was given a great ovation as he left the game
with 1:39 remaining.
came up with an amazing shooting percentage of 56.5 on 26 of 46
attempts. St. Louis a commendable 34.4 percentage, 22 of 64.
first game, the Texas Christian University, Southwest Conference
Champions, outclassed New Mexico A. & M., 61-44, in the consolation
game. The game lacked any fireworks. It was strictly no contest after
Texas Christian sprinted to a 17-9 lead at the quarter. The Frogs were
in front 25-18 at the half.
teams had come up with a very cool shooting percentage. New Mexico A. &
M. was able to can only five of 32 field shots in the first 20 minutes
for a 15.7 percentage. T.C.U. got only 10 down in 35 shots for 28.6 per
Aggies put on a brief rally in the third quarter to come within four
points of a tie at 22-26 but fell behind rapidly as the Texans came to
life. T.C.U. was ahead 12 points at the third quarter, 43-31, and New
Mexico was unable to score a point in the first seven minutes of the
last quarter. By that time the score was 58-33 in favor of the Frogs.
of the 11 T.C.U. players scored five or more points. Fromme was the big
boy with 12. Jim Tackett counted 14 points for New
Mexico A. & M. The Aggies were eliminated in the second round of the
National Intercollegiate Tournament.
house of more than 10,500 saw the games.
(AP)- It will be Lovellette & Co. of Kansas against the giant killers of
St. John's for the National Collegiate Basketball crown.
Kansas got to the throne room doorway the easy way in the semi-finals of
the NCAA playoffs last night with a 74-55 victory over Santa Clara. St.
John's of Brooklyn, the "miracle team", got there by the margin of a
game-ending gasp, with a 61-59 win over favored Illinois.
second game, Kansas took a quick lead, Santa Clara tied it at 7-7, then
Kansas pulled steadily ahead. It was just too much Lovellette for the
scrappy Broncos (video).
big Kansas center scored 33 points against the Santa Clara Broncos. His
108 points for the three-game NCAA playoff set a new record. The old
mark, in four games, was 83. It was set by Don Sunderlage of Illinois
won a 52-51 victory over St. John's when they met last year in Madison
Square Garden. But these St. John's hoop magicians have thrown the book
out the window.
experts didn't even think the Redmen would get to the national tourney.
They did it the hard way in the regional tourney by beating Kentucky,
No. 1 team in the Associated Press national poll, Illinois, the Redmenís
victims last night were the No. 2 rated team in the same poll.
semi-final victories qualified both St. John's and Kansas for the U. S.
Olympic Games trials.
Lovellette stood out as the No. 1 individual performer in the
semi-finals, St. John's flashed a star of its own in center Bob Zawoluk,
a 6-foot 6-incher. He tallied 24 points, including nine field goals.
John's led 33-27 at halftime but the Illini deadlocked it 43-43 at the end-of the third period. Zawoluk's 10 points in the final quarter
carried St. John's over the hump. Jim Bredar and Rod Fletcher led the
Illini scoring with 14 points each.
March 27. (AP) Kansas rules the world of collegiate basketball today and
big Clyde Lovellette wears the crown.
Jayhawks won the NCAA title in convincing fashion last night by downing
St. John's of Brooklyn, 80-68, in the championship finale of the 1952
Lovellette, keeping up a terrific scoring pace with the championship
chips down, led the way with 33 points. His record-breaking performance
brought him the designation as most valuable player of the tourney.
Kansas conquest, came after Illinois won third ranking by downing Santa
Clara, 67-64, in the consolation game. Kansas had beaten Santa Clara and
St John's had upset Illinois in the semifinals.
Kansas, which was rated eighth by the nation's sports writers in the
1952 Associated Press poll, never gave the Redmen of St John's a chance
in the payoff game. Lovellette put the Kansans in front with an opening
free throw and they stayed there all the way.
Jayhawks set up an iron defense that kept the Redmen in check so they
never were able to keep a sustained offensive clicking until the final
period. It was the only one in which the losers held a scoring edge.
Meanwhile, Lovellette kept firing his deadly pushups and hook shots to
run up a dozen field goals along with nine free throws.
Bill Lienhard and Forward Bob Kenny added a dozen points each as they
shared the sharpshooting role with Lovellette and Guard Gene Kelley was
a sparkplug on the floor (video).
6-foot 9-inch Lovellette ran his four-game NCAA playoff scoring total to
141 points. He had broken the old record of 83 points in the first three
games. It had been set by Don Sunderlage of Illinois last year.
also set a new free throw record of 35 for the four games. The old
record of 27 also was held by Sunderlage.
Another record that fell before the deadeye Kansans was the high score
for an NCAA championship final. The 80 points topped the 71 tallied by
City College of New York in beating Bradley for the title in 1950.
tight Kansas defense kept the St. John's star center, Bob Zawoluk fairly
well in check through most of the game as Lovellette hung over him like
a leaning tower under the basket. Zawoluk got nine points in sparking a
fourth quarter St. John's drive, bringing his game total to 20. He
fouled out three and a half minutes before the end.
Illinois downed Santa Clara in the consolation game last night on the
strength of Big Jim Kerr's 26-point performance. Santa Clara kept
challenging all the way.
the score was tied at 57-57 and 58-58, Illinois pulled ahead 64-60 and
held on to finish three points in front.