Mar 23, 2014 5:33 PM by St. Louis, MO
If he was hurting, Andrew Harrison didn't show any effects of the elbow injury he suffered in the opening game of the NCAA Tournament against Kansas St. The Freshman point guard started for the Wildcats and scored a couple of early driving baskets around the lane.
Harrison's brother, Aaron, scored 7 quick points on 3-4 shooting from the field. In fact, back-to-back three pointers by Aaron and James Young put Kentucky up 14-10 with 13:00 to go in the first half.
Andrew Harrison really tested the elbow by hitting a three ponter to give UK a 19-15 lead. But, Wichita St. would comeback. A three pointer by Tekele Cotton. Then, a steal off a bad pass from Aaron Harrison led to two free throws by Cotton for the one point Shockers lead. Then, Andrew Harrison was picked by Fred Van Vleet and he dished to Darius Carter for the slam and a 22-19 Wichita State lead.
The Shockers turned it up a notch. Julius Randle scored his first two of the game 16 minutes in. Wichita State hit three straight lay-ups, all part of a 17-4 run to take a 32-23 lead.
UK would cut the lead back to five on a Willie Cauley-Stein slam, 32-27 with 3:23 to go in the half. But, Wichita State got another steal off Aaron Harrison and it led to a Cleanthony Early big time dunk as he was fouled.
A James Young three right before the end of the shot clock expired helped UK go into the half down just six at 37-31. James Young had eight to lead UK at the break. The Harrison's had 7 points each but they also combined for seven of the Cats eight turnovers.
Julius Randle came out of the locker room ready to play. In the first two and a-half minutes, Randle had five points, including a huge putback slam, four rebounds and an assist. Kentucky finally got the lead back on an Alex Poythress lay-up with 16:23 to go in the game, 41-40 Cats.
Kentucky trailed again by one when Aaron Harrison dropped in a three pointer to give up a 48-46 lead. Then, UK extended it to four on the Andrew Harrison alley-oop pass to Cauley-Stein for the dunk, 50-46 Wildcats. Wichita St. would cut it to one on a Cleanthony Early jumper. But, Randle went to work again with a nice spin move for a lay-in and he was fouled. Randle made the lay-up for a 53-49 UK lead.
UK held a one point lead when Wichita St. went on a 6-0 run. Again, it was three straight lay-ups. Chadrack Lufile hit the first and then, Cleanthony Early made the next two in transition. The shockers took a 58=55 lead.
Down three with under seven minutes to play, Aaron Harrison just tossed up a deep three as the shot clock was about to expire and banked in a three to tie it at 60. Ron Baker answered with a deep three for a Shockers 63-60 lead, After an Andrew Harrison lay-up, Cleanthony Early hit a three to get him to 24 points for the game. Early scored on four of the last five made baskets for the Shockers, which took a 66-62 lead.
After a couple of Aaron Harrison free throws, early hit another three pointer 69-65 lead. Kentucky would fight back and with just under three minutes to go, James Young drove for a short jumper that gave UK a 70-69 lead. Cleanthony Early hit another big jumper to re-claim the lead for the shockers 71-70. Then, James Young had ice in his veins, hit a huge three for a 73-71 lead for UK.
After a Wichita State miss, Andrew Harrison, knocked in two free throws to extend the lead to four, 75-71. But, Baker would answer with a banked-in three pointer (like Harrison had done earlier in the game), 75-74 UK .
After a couple of Randle free throws, Ron Baker would miss a potential game-tying three but Early got the rebound and was fouled. He would hit both free throws to cut the UK lead to 77-76. Andrew Harrison then got fouled seven seconds left and hit 1 of 2, 78-76 UK.
Wichita State would get one more possession with 3.2 seconds remaining. Fred Van Vleet got a look at a long three but it bounced off the mark. Kentucky advances to the Sweet 16 where it will face, rival Louisville, for the second time this season. UK won December 28th 73-66 in Rupp Arena.
Andrew Harrison led the Cats with 20 points and 3 assists. Aaron had 19, James Young and Julius Randle had 13 apiece with Randle also getting 10 rebounds for his 22nd double-double of the season The Wildcats are now 26-10.