For a few short minutes, Western Kentucky did its best UNC Asheville impersonation.
Then Kentucky kicked it into gear. Again.
The South’s No. 1 seed handled the 16-seed Hilltoppers 81-66 Thursday night, shrugging off a 12-10 deficit six minutes into the game – after starting off with a 10-0 lead – for an 81-66 victory.
The Wildcats (33-2) were simply longer, stronger and every bit the dominant team in the game. They just needed a small push to show it. UK used a series of small spurts such as 8-2 or 9-0 to take a comfortable halftime lead, then coasting in the second half.
Sophomore Terrence Jones led all scorers with 22 points, while sophomore Doron Lamb and freshman Anthony Davis each added 16. Jones had a game-high 10 rebounds, while Davis blocked seven shots.
That sets up a round of 32 game against the Iowa State-Connecticut winner, either of which figure to be overmatched against the Wildcats. But I’d guess Big Blue Nation is rooting for a UConn victory.
That way, they can earn a measure of revenge for last year’s Final Four loss.
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