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Ellis, Alexander lift Kansas over Tennessee 82-67

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LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. (AP) Perry Ellis and Cliff Alexander helped Kansas pull away late in a victory over Tennessee.

Ellis scored 24 points, Cliff Alexander added 16 and No. 11 Kansas beat Tennessee 82-67 Friday in an Orlando Classic semifinal.

''The big thing is we got stops,'' Kansas coach Bill Self said.

Frank Mason III had 11 points and seven assists for Kansas (4-1).

Tennessee (2-2) got 16 points from Josh Richardson, while Kevin Punter finished with 14.

After Tennessee's Armani Moore tied it with two free throws, Alexander's 3-point play keyed a 7-0 stretch as Kansas went ahead 69-62 with five minutes left.

''He's starting to get it,'' Self said of Alexander.

Ellis' 3-point play made it 74-64 with two minutes to go.

''They're tough,'' Tennessee coach Donnie Tyndall said of Kansas. ''They're talented. They're well coached. They have great depth.''

Alexander had consecutive dunks to give Kansas a 53-40 lead 4 minutes into the second half. Mason set up both with nifty passes.

The Volunteers, as they had throughout the game, battled back to 54-53 with 12 minutes to play as Detrick Mostella made a pair of 3s and Richardson had a layup following a Kansas turnover.

''We took some positives out of the game, but we're disappointed we didn't win the game,'' Tyndall said.

Mostella had 13 points.

Dominic Woodson had two in-close baskets for Tennessee, while Kansas' Brannen Greene connected on a long-range jumper just before the shot clock expired as the Jayhawks kept a narrow lead through the midpoint of the second half.

Perry had 11 points to help Kansas grab a 40-33 halftime lead.

A wild final few minutes saw Tennessee pull to 35-31 after Punter made a layup and two free throws after a flagrant foul call. Richardson had a basket on the ensuing possession.

''They got out to some runs, but I'm happy that we stayed composed,'' Ellis said. ''We fought back after those runs and I felt like that's what we needed.''

Kansas responded by getting a 3 by Svi Mykhailiuk and Devonte Graham's slam.

Graham, coming back from a shoulder injury, had two points and one rebound in seven minutes.


Kansas: The Jayhawks reached the semifinals by beating Rhode Island 76-60 Thursday. ... Kansas is 34-6 in in-season tournament games under Self. ... The Jayhawks are 4-1 or better for the 10th time in Self's 12 years at the school.

Tennessee: The Volunteers topped Santa Clara 64-57 in their tourney opener Thursday. ... Tennessee was called for 28 fouls. The Volunteers entered averaging 26.3, second-most in the country.


Kansas outrebounded Tennessee 44-22 and had 18 on the offensive end. ... Ellis had 13 of the Jayhawks' rebounds.


The Jayhawks won the assist battle 17-8 but turned the ball over 16 times. Tennessee had 10 turnovers.


Kansas will face No. 20 Michigan State in Sunday's championship game.

Tennessee will play Marquette in Sunday's third-place game.