NEW ORLEANS — The Kentucky Wildcats withstood a late second-half rally by the Kansas Jayhawks to capture the program’s eight NCAA championship with a 67-59 victory tonight at the Superdome in New Orleans.


Kansas, which trailed by double digits for much of the game, had a chance to cut the lead to three points when guard Elijah Johnson elevated for a three-pointer. But a Kentucky defender forced him to pull the shot down, causing him to travel with 23.5 seconds left and Kentucky leading, 65-59.


Doron Lamb led the Wildcats in scoring wth 22 points, making three of six three-point shots. Star center Anthony Davis struggled on offense, making only one of 10 shots, but he shiined everywhere else, finishing with 16 rebounds, six blocked shots, five assists and three steals.


The Jayhawks, who shot only 35.5 percent, were led by the trio of Tyshawn Taylor (19 points), Thomas Robinson (18) and Elijah Johnson (13).