Tuesday, February 2, 2016

Kentucky Suffers Terrible Loss at Tennessee

Tennessee 84
(20) Kentucky 77

Final from Knoxville, Tennessee

No. 20 Kentucky let a 21-point first half lead slip away on the way to suffering a disappointing 84-77 loss at Tennessee.

The Wildcats (16-6, 6-3 SEC) held a 34-13 lead over the Volunteers midway through the first half. That lead was cut to 42-36 at halftime. Tennessee then controlled the majority of the second half to earn the win.

Kevin Punter led Tennessee (11-11, 4-5) with 27 points. Armani Moore finished with 18 points and 13 rebounds. Detrick Mostella scored 13 points.

Jamal Murray had 21 points, 5 rebounds and 5 assists for Kentucky. Tyler Ulis chipped in 20 points and 5 assists. Alex Poythress had 14 points but failed to produce much offense in the second half.

The Wildcats were out-rebounded 37-36 in the game. Tennessee was 30-34 from the free throw line while Kentucky was 18-23.

Kentucky returns to action Saturday at Rupp Arena against Florida.

Some thoughts: 

- Kentucky looked like a tired team tonight. That is the downside of a road game at Kansas during the middle of conference play. Kansas plays in-state rival Kansas State tomorrow night, but the Jayhawks will be in the friendly confines of Allen Fieldhouse.

- Many Kentucky fans are in meltdown mode following tonight's loss. In my opinion, the Wildcats were a tired team tonight and will put forth a much better effort Saturday. Remember, there's still a lot of season to go.

- Jamal Murray struggles mightily on the defensive end.

- The UK bench produced 4 points and 5 rebounds tonight. Tennessee's bench scored 26 points.

- What has happened to Marcus Lee? 2 points and 3 rebounds tonight

- Could Isaac Humphries help? Is it worth a chance considering what Kentucky is getting in the paint right now?

Box score (click to enlarge):

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