PARADISE ISLAND, Bahamas (AP) — Freshman guard Gradey Dick scored a season-high 25 points to help No. 3 Kansas defeat North Carolina State 80-74 in Wednesday’s Battle 4 Atlantis opener, giving coach Bill Self a successful return to the bench after a four match suspension.
Dick had 18 on six 3-pointers in the first half before going off 1-for-8 after halftime. Jalen Wilson added 19 points and 11 rebounds for the reigning champion Jayhawks (5-0), blowing an eight-point lead into halftime and a nine-point lead into the second half before blowing it out in the final minutes.
Casey Morsell scored 21 points to lead the Wolfpack (4-1), while Terquavion Smith added 19 points.
NC State played at a fast pace, took the full field and stayed within reach of Kansas all the way, but couldn’t take a lead in the second half even after five ties, the latter coming in at 63-all on Jack Clark’s jumper with 7:14 left.
No. 7 BAYLOR 89, MCNEESE STATE 60
WACO, Texas (AP) — True freshman Keyonte George scored 17 points, Adam Flagler added 13 with nine assists and Baylor retired from McNeese State.
LJ Cryer had 16 points for the Bears (4-1) following three consecutive 20-point games that earned him Big 12 Player of the Week honors. Three days after a career-high 28 points in a win over then-No. 8 UCLA, Cryer had two 3-pointers and a jumper to push the Bears to a quick 10-2 lead.
Jonathan Massie and Zach Scott each had 12 points for McNeese State (2-4). All of Scott’s scores came in four 3-pointers.
No. 15 KENTUCKY 96, NORTH FLORIDA 56
LEXINGTON, Ky. (AP) — Jacob Toppin scored a career-high 20 points and had 10 rebounds to help Kentucky defeat North Florida.
The Wildcats (4-2) easily recovered from an 88-72 loss to No. 6 Gonzaga Sunday to win their 23rd consecutive home game against an unranked opponent.
Jarius Hicklen led the Ospreys (1-4) with 17 points.
OHIO STATE 80, No. 21 TEXAS TECH 73
LAHAINA, Hawaii (AP)—Justice Sueing scored 23 of his career-high 33 points in the second half to help Ohio State hold off Texas Tech for a victory in the game for fifth place in the Maui Invitational.
Sueing scored 15 straight points for the Buckeyes in the final 10 minutes to turn the Red Raiders back every time they threatened to run.
Ohio State (5-1) shot 52% from the field, made all 18 free throws and never trailed after the first two minutes.
Texas Tech (4-2) got a career-high 21 points from Daniel Batcho and 19 from Kevin Obanor.
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