Kentucky is the 2012 NCAA champion after the Wildcats defeated Kansas in the men’s championship game in New Orleans.

John Calipari’s team scored 41 first-half points as they hit their outside shots and did a good job getting to the line, taking a 14 point lead into the break.

But Kansas turned up the heat defensively in the second half, chipping away at the deficit until it was down to five with a minute and a half remaining – and the Jayhawks had missed some good opportunities that could have made the game even closer.

Ultimately though, Kansas didn’t have quite enough offensive firepower to come back and Kentucky were able to make their free throws down the stretch.

Likely No. 1 overall pick Anthony Davis was dominant for the Wildcats, despite not making a field goal until late in the game and finishing 1-10 from the field. Davis had 16 rebounds, six blocks, five assists and three steals (leading the team in all four categories), and locked down the paint, making it tough for Kansas to get easy baskets. Guard Doron Lamb led Kentucky in scoring with 22 points, but Davis was named the Most Outstanding Player of the Final Four.

The Jayhawks’ Thomas Robinson had a tough night offensively, finishing with 18 points on 6-17 shooting, but was a beast on the glass, pulling down 17 boards. Tyshawn Taylor led Kansas with 19 points, and centre Jeff Withey had four blocks, helping to stem the Kentucky tide with his interior defence.

Baylor perfect, win women’s title

Junior phenom Britney Griner had 26 points, 13 rebounds and five blocks to lead Baylor to a dominating 80-61 victory over Notre Dame in the NCAA women’s basketball championship in Denver.

The Lady Bears become the first team, male or female, to complete a perfect 40-0 season.

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