Monday, November 3, 2014

Kentucky Destroys NAIA D1 No. 2 Pikeville in Exhibition Game

(1) Kentucky 116
Pikeville 68

Final from Lexington, Kentucky

Game recap by UK:

More than once, John Calipari has commented publicly that Kentucky was in for a reprieve when the season finally came.

With all the talent on the floor in practice and the reduced workload on the Wildcats playing in a two-platoon system, Coach Cal said games would be easier.

With one exhibition in the books, he might be right.

"When Coach says the practices are way harder than the games, it's true," Willie Cauley-Stein said. "You really felt it tonight. Like, I feel like I was fresh all the time."

Cauley-Stein and the Cats looked it too.

With no player on the floor for more than 20 minutes and 10 playing at least 16, Kentucky overwhelmed NAIA foe Pikeville in a 116-68 victory in front of 21,036 at Rupp Arena on Sunday night. Karl-Anthony Towns led UK with 22 points on 10-of-11 shooting in just 18 minutes and the Cats racked up 29 assists and shot 65.3 percent as a team.

"We played really well," Towns said. "The team did a really good job. I'm really happy with the assist totals, really. It shows we're moving the ball. Such a talented team, you don't expect a lot like that. We did a great job as a team. We ran the floor, we contested a lot of shots, but we have a lot of things we need to work on. That's what we're going to start back on tomorrow."

The performance led Pikeville head coach Kelly Wells to declare UK "the most talented team in the country" and potentially the most talented in program history, but the visiting Bears hung around in the early going. When K.K. Simmons buried a jumper at the 14:04 mark for two of his game-high 28 points, Pikeville pulled to within 22-18.

Complete Recap

Box Score (click to enlarge):

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