LAHANA, Hawaii (AP) -- Nick Collison wasn't even able to finish Kansas' first game at the Maui Invitational because of severe cramping in the intense heat.
After loading up on Gatorade and salt -- and even combining the
two -- he led the Jayhawks (No. 3 ESPN/USA Today, No. 4 AP) to a win over Houston on Tuesday.
On Wednesday, he was really impressive with 22 points and a career-high 19 rebounds in an 80-62 victory over Seton Hall in the fifth-place game.
"I'm not amazed at all," teammate Kirk Hinrich said of the effort by Collison, who left the Lahaina Civic Center quickly for more fluids and air conditioning. "Nick is a great rebounder. He has a knack for the ball and then he just outworks people."
The Jayhawks (2-1), who were beaten 93-91 by Ball State in the
opening round of the tournament, took over against the Pirates with
a 17-0 second-half run that featured tenacious defense and
"We were doing a good job of hanging in there and doing good
things and all of a sudden Nick's rebounding and effort on the
boards lifted everybody."
Collison, a junior forward, seemed to grab every missed shot,
especially on the defensive end and it was his tip-in of a missed
free throw that was a key basket in the deciding run.
Seton Hall (1-3), which came within a point of upsetting top-ranked Duke in the opening round, lost any offensive rhythm it had during the spurt, turning the ball over five times in the run and missing forced shots.
"They did a pretty good job of guarding our perimeter people
and it was a live by the 3 die by the 3 for us," Seton Hall coach
Louis Orr said. "Kansas seemed to get stronger as the game went on
and I think they were more determined."
Drew Gooden added 16 points and 12 rebounds for Kansas, while
Hinrich had 14 points and Keith Langford 13.
Andre Barrett had all 18 of his points on 3-pointers for Seton
Hall, while Darius Lane had 16 points, 12 from beyond the arc.
Kansas finished with a 57-32 rebound advantage and Seton Hall was 13-for-33 on 3s with Barrett going 6-for-11 and Lane 4-for-12.
"That was Seton Hall's fourth game in six days and we felt at
some point fatigue would set in and it did," Kansas coach Roy
A thundering rebound dunk by Mauricio Branwell with 7:50 to play
brought the Pirates to 55-54, but that would be their last points
for 4:11 as Kansas pulled away.
Collison started the run with a hook shot and freshman guard
Aaron Miles scored on a fastbreak layup. Langford, another freshman
guard, scored on a drive with 6:02 left and was fouled. He missed
the free throw for the three-point play, but Collison went around
his man on the lane and tipped it in for a 63-54 lead with 6:01
left. Langford scored the last four points of the run, the last two
on a jumper with 3:55 left that made it 72-54.
Kansas beat Houston in the consolation semifinals of the tournament sponsored by EA Sports, while Seton Hall beat Chaminade.
"It was great we came back the way we did in the tournament but
it's still going to be disappointing to watch the championship game
on TV, Hinrich said.
Orr, in his first year at Seton Hall, wasn't going to let a
losing record ruin the tournament.
"Games against Kansas and Duke and three games in as many nights, this is an experience you can't get any other way," he said.
The schools' only other meeting was in the championship game of the 1988 Great Alaska Shootout, a 92-81 Kansas victory. The Pirates, however, went on that season to make their only Final Four appearance, losing in overtime to Michigan in the national championship game in Seattle.