Jalen Wilson carried Kansas in the second half, when he scored 21 of his 23 points, as the No. 7 Jayhawks held on to beat No. 20 Kentucky 65-62 in a cold-shooting game at the Champions Classic on Tuesday night in Indianapolis.
Wilson had all of his team's second-half baskets until Ochai Agbaji scored five points in 19 seconds to give Kansas a 60-55 lead with 2:26 to go. The Jayhawks (2-1) won despite shooting 29.9 percent from the field.
Kentucky (1-2) had a chance to tie the game in the final seconds, but Davion Mintz's 3-point attempt went off the rim to end another poor shooting night for the Wildcats. They were 3 of 21 from long range after missing all 10 their shots from behind the arc in a Sunday home loss to Richmond.
Isaiah Jackson had 12 rebounds, eight blocked shots and seven points for Kentucky. Mintz and Brandon Boston Jr. each had a team-high 12 points.
Mintz did hit a 3-pointer with 12.4 seconds left to pull Kentucky within 63-62. Agbaji made two free throws with 10.2 seconds remaining for a three-point lead.
Agbaji was the only other Kansas player with double-digit points, finishing with 17. Christian Braun pulled down 13 rebounds to go with his eight points. Wilson had 10 rebounds for a double-double.
Kansas, often playing small ball with five guards, produced a 47-43 rebounding edge but didn't shoot much better than Kentucky from beyond the arc. The Jayhawks were 5 of 21 from deep and had trouble inside against the Wildcats' superior length.
Kentucky blocked 12 shots.
Kansas, which hadn't led since before the game's first media timeout, battled all the way back from a 13-point, first-half deficit to take a 39-38 lead at the end of a 10-0 run with 12:46 left in the game. Wilson had six points during the 10-point spurt.
The Wildcats used a 15-0 run to lead 17-5 lead at the midpoint of the first half, but Kansas whittled its deficit to 35-29 at the break.
--Field Level Media