Men's Basketball
Seven Double-Figure Scorers Lead No. 16 Kentucky Past Arkansas

Seven Double-Figure Scorers Lead No. 16 Kentucky Past Arkansas

by Tim Letcher

When Kentucky and Arkansas met in Fayetteville on Jan. 27, both teams struggled on offense. Kentucky came out on top in a plodding, 63-57 victory. In the rematch on Saturday, the game was played at a much different pace.

Kentucky (21-8, 11-5 Southeastern Conference) placed seven players in double figures on its way to a 111-102 win and a season sweep over the Hogs on Saturday inside Rupp Arena.

Antonio Reeves led the scoring barrage with 22 points, but he got plenty of help from his running mates. D.J. Wagner had 19 points, Rob Dillingham and Aaron Bradshaw each had 15, Zvonimir Ivisic had 12 points and a career-high nine rebounds, while Justin Edwards and Reed Sheppard each had 10.

It was the first time that Kentucky had seven double-figure scorers since Feb. 19, 2005 in a win against Mississippi State. Randolph Morris led the Cats in scoring that night with 17 points. Saturday’s game marked just the sixth time in school history that Kentucky has had seven double-figure scorers in a game.

Arkansas scored the first four points of the game before a Wagner three got the Cats on the board. After the Hogs got a bucket on their next possession, Wagner hit another three to tie the game at 6-6.

The Hogs made their first six shots from the floor and took a 12-8 lead in the process. The game would be tied at 12, 14 and 17 before Kentucky scored five in a row, capped by a pair of Tre Mitchell, to lead 22-17.

Arkansas answered by scoring the next seven points to lead 24-22. However, Wagner hit his third three of the game to give the Cats a 25-24 lead with 10:23 to play in the half. The Hogs scored the next three points before a Reeves three and a Bradshaw dunk gave UK a 30-28 advantage.

The seesaw game continued as Arkansas scored four in a row to lead 31-30. Bradshaw then scored on a dunk and converted a subsequent free throw to make it 33-31 Cats with 7:39 left in the half. However, the Hogs would tie the game at 33 and it would also be tied at 36 and 38 before the Hogs scored four in a row to make it 42-38.

Kentucky would answer with a Bradshaw layup, a pair of Sheppard threes and a Reeves layup to lead 48-42. After an Arkansas three, Bradshaw hit a three of his own, and later added two free throws to give UK a 53-45 lead. The Cats would lead 53-48 at the half.

Wagner got the scoring started in the second half with his fourth triple of the game. The Cats would build a 10-point lead, 60-50, before Arkansas went on an 12-1 run to re-take the lead, 62-61. A Dillingham runner gave UK the lead back, 63-62.

Sheppard then hit a runner in the lane and Bradshaw knocked down two free throws to give UK a 67-62 lead. After two Arkansas free throws, UK got three free throws, one from Bradshaw and two from Reeves, to lead 70-64. However, Arkansas fought back with an 18-5 run to lead 84-75 with 9:06 to play.

Kentucky would respond with an 12-4 run, sparked by five points from Ivisic, to get within one, 88-87 with 6:31 remaining. After Arkansas got a pair of free throws, Dillingham hit a pair from the charity stripe, then made a driving layup to give the Cats a 91-90 lead.

After Arkansas took the lead back, Dillingham found Edwards with a lob pass for a dunk and the Cats led 93-92 with 4:45 left. Dillingham added a pair of free throws to give the Cats a 95-92 advantage.

The run continued for the Cats when Dillingham found Ivisic for a dunk, making it 97-92. An Edwards free throw made it 98-92 with 3:18 to play. From there, the Cats were able to keep the Hogs at bay and secure the victory.

Kentucky returns to action on Wednesday night, hosting Vanderbilt for Senior Night. Tipoff is set for 9 p.m. ET and the game can be seen on the SEC Network.

Related Stories

View all