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Updated: Friday, March 14, 2003 6:15 PM EST
NCAA BASKETBALL RECAP
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(4) Kansas 89, Iowa St 74
IOWA ST. CYCLONES
Iowa St. Cyclones
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KANSAS JAYHAWKS
Kansas Jayhawks
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DALLAS (Ticker) -- Kansas started its so-called new season with a hot hand.

Keith Langford scored 19 points and led a balanced attack as the fourth-ranked Jayhawks coasted to an 89-74 victory over Iowa State in the quarterfinals of the Big 12 Conference Tournament.

All five starters scored in double figures for the Jayhawks (25-6), who will face Missouri in Saturday's semifinals.

Jeff Graves and Aaron Miles scored 16 points and Nick Collison and Kirk Hinrich each had 14. The Jayhawks shot a sizzling 60 percent from the field.

"This game was important to us," Kansas coach Roy Williams said. "If you don't come to play every day, you're not here on Sunday."

The Jayhawks are in contention for a top seed in the NCAA Tournament and took another step in that direction with an easy win on Friday. Graves had nine of his points in the first half to help the Jayhawks build a comfortable 45-30 lead at intermission.

The closest Iowa State would get in the second half was at 55-45 on a basket by Jared Homan with 15:37 left. But baskets by Graves, Langford and Miles increased the lead to 16 points.

Kansas built its lead as high as 22 points when Langford sank two free throws to make it 82-60 with 4:13 left.

The Jayhawks, who have claimed three Big 12 tournament titles but none since 1999, have won five straight and 12 of their last 13 games.

"I thought we had production out of all five of our starters," Williams said, "Jeff was strong for us today. He hadn't been scoring as consistently lately, but when he scores like he did today it helps everybody out."

Graves made 7-of-9 shots from the floor and grabbed 12 rebounds. Collison made 5-of-8 shots and often was open as the Cyclones concentrated on Graves.

"Teams have to pay so much more attention to him and they sag off me, which really helps," Collison said.

Jackson Vroman scored 24 points for Iowa State (16-13), which remains in contention for an NIT berth.

"I think we just met a team that has a chance to win the national championship," Iowa State coach Larry Eustachy said. "They just overpowered up throughout the game."

Iowa State lost to Kansas by 19 and 29 points in the regular season and was unable to keep pace again on Friday. The Jayhawks methodically pulled away in the first half, building their lead to 33-20 on a reverse layup by Langford with 6:17 left.


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