COLUMBIA, Mo. (AP) -- No baskets in the final 7:25 still somehow equaled no worries for No. 3 Kansas.
The unbeaten Jayhawks shrugged off 40-percent shooting by hitting a season-high 28 free throws in 45 attempts to hold off border rival Missouri 76-70 on Saturday night. Brandon Rush was 2-for-14 from the field but made three key free throws in the final 1 minute, 4 seconds in which the Jayhawks went 8-for-12.
"I'm certainly not going to complain about the number we shot on the road," coach Bill Self said. "We made just enough to win the game, but we made it hard on ourselves down the stretch by not converting, and we've got to do better."
Mario Chalmers had 18 points and Darnell Jackson had 13 points and nine rebounds for the Jayhawks (18-0, 3-0 Big 12), off to their best start since a school-record 22-0 in 1996-97. Rush, the younger brother of former Missouri star Kareem Rush, went 9-for-14 from the line and finished with 13 points and nine rebounds.
Darrell Arthur was a third Kansas player to narrowly miss a double-double, getting 10 points and nine rebounds.
Kansas' last basket came on a reverse layup by Chalmers that made it 63-56. The rest of the way, the Jayhawks were 13-for-20 from the line. Not great, but good enough, with Chalmers going 8-for-11.
"I made a big-time effort to get to the line, or stay aggressive and get easy baskets somewhere," Rush said. "Yeah, I was getting frustrated, but I was trying not to pay too much attention to it."
Self felt Rush probably put too much pressure on himself. His older brother plays for the NBA's Indiana Pacers and he's an in-state sibling from Kansas City who got away from Missouri.
"This is a big game for him, but it's also a hard game for him," Self said. "He likes a lot of people here and Mizzou was, obviously, very good to his brother."
Kansas has won four straight and eight of 10 in the hotly contested series despite only its fourth game below 50 percent shooting. Another compensating factor was a 52-43 rebounding advantage and stifling defense that held Missouri to 38 percent shooting while keeping the Tigers off the line.
Missouri was whistled for 30 fouls, Kansas 22, and the Tigers were only 11-for-22 from the line. Three times, Missouri missed both ends of a two-shot foul.
"I've never seen so many blocked charges called in a long time," coach Mike Anderson said. "The thing about it, none of them went our way. For a coach, that's hard to swallow."
The matchup attracted a crowd of 15,061, the first sellout crowd of the season at Mizzou Arena, which had been averaging just over 6,000.
Stefhon Hannah had 23 points for Missouri (11-7, 1-2), which has lost two straight since beating then-No. 12 Texas a week ago. The Tigers ended a 13-game home winning streak, including 10 double-digit wins this season, although they made the Jayhawks work for it.
DeMarre Carroll had a season-low five points on 2-for-11 shooting, but had 12 rebounds. Self said players on both sides might have been playing too hard, and Carroll didn't disagree.
"I was too hyped for the game," Carroll said. "If we shoot 50 percent, we easily would have won. You can't ask for a better defensive game."
Kansas, which entered the game averaging a nation-best 25-point winning margin, never led by more than eight.
A pair of baskets by Jason Horton in an 18-second span cut Missouri's deficit to 66-63 with four minutes to go, but the Tigers came up empty on their next four possessions and Rush hit a pair of free throws for a 70-63 lead after an intentional foul by Matt Lawrence, who collared him as he swept in for a fast-break dunk with 1:04 left.
Missouri jumped to a 7-1 lead in the first two minutes, taking advantage of an 0-for-4 start by Kansas, and kept the momentum most of the half. Kansas' two-point lead at the break at 38-36 matched its biggest cushion.
Rush was scoreless the first 10 minutes and was 1-for-7 in the half.
Missouri junior Vaidotas Volkus got a surprise start, the first of his career, at forward in place of struggling Leo Lyons and had eight points on 4-for-5 shooting. Lyons had 10 points and five rebounds in 13 minutes before fouling out with 4:52 to go.
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