LEXINGTON, Ky. (AP) Tyler Ulis scored 20 points, Derek Willis added a career-best 18 and No. 20 Kentucky used an early 20-0 run to blow past outmanned Missouri 88-54 on Wednesday night.
The Wildcats (16-4, 6-2 Southeastern Conference) had it easy in improving to 9-0 against the Tigers and winning their third straight overall. Kentucky spotted the Tigers an opening layup by Wes Clark before the big spurt that quickly put the game out of reach, twice stretching its lead to 40 points in the second half.
Good shooting was the key again for Kentucky, which made 52 percent from the field after hitting 55 percent against Vanderbilt.
Willis also grabbed 12 rebounds for his second double-double in four games. Isaiah Briscoe had 15 points, Skal Labissiere 12 and Jamal Murray 11 to round out Kentucky’s double-figure scorers.
Clark had 11 points for Missouri (8-12, 1-6 SEC), which sustained its biggest loss this season.
Missouri landed its third commit in the Class of 2016, as power forward Reed Nikko announced his commitment on Monday night via Twitter.
“Couldn’t be happier to announce that I’m commiting to The University of Missouri for basketball,” he tweeted, attached with a thank you note to family, coaches and teammates.
Nikko, who attends Maple Grove Senior High in Minnesota, was in Columbia, on an official, visit this past weekend. He had scheduled an official visit to Kansas State scheduled this weekend, according to Rivals, which rates him as a three-star recruit.
The 6-foot-9 power forward joins small forward Willie Jackson and center Mitchell Smith in Kim Anderson’s current recruiting class.
Missouri received its first verbal commitment in the Class of 2016 Saturday afternoon, as 6-foot-10 center Mitchell Smith has decided to play for Kim Anderson. Smith, a native of Arkansas, made the decision while on an official visit to Missouri and announced the news by way of his Twitter account.
Missouri will lose senior Ryan Rosburg at the end of the 2015-16 season, and the addition of Smith will help the Tigers account for that loss. Among the other programs considered by Smith Arkansas, Creighton, Memphis and Wichita State.
Smith, who was a first team All-Class 7A selection last season, played for the Arkansas Wings Elite grassroots program this spring/summer on the Nike EYBL circuit. He will join a front court that includes current underclassmen Jakeenan Gant, D’Angelo Allen and Kevin Puryear, and junior college transfer Russell Woods.
Video credit: Courtside Films