Apr 5, 2014 10:19 PM by Arlington, Tex.
Kentucky was making its 16th Final Four. Wisconsin was playing in just its third. But, only two reserve players for UK, Jon Hood and Jarrod Polson, had been in the atmosphere of a Final Four.
Neither team looked nervous. It just looked like another basketball game as Kentucky got on the board first thanks to a three pointer from James Young. A fast break lay-up by Aaron Harrison put the Cats up 5-2.
Wisconsin was just as calm on its end. After James Young made it 9-7 UK, the Badgers went on a 10-0 run. It included a beautiful drive from Bronson Koenig then two straight three poiners from Ben Brust. Wisconsin would take a 17-9 lead.
Kentucky would come back with six straight. Aaron Harrison hit a jumper first. Then, it was Dakari Johnson with a second chance tip shot off his own miss. Last, it was a Julius Randle pull up jumper to cut the Badgers lead to 17-15.
The Badgers would extend it to an 8 point advantage again as Koenig hit another three and two Brust free throws.
With 5:10 to go in the first half, Dakari Johnson was fouled by Frank Kaminsky. But, Johnson also pushed Kaminsky to the ground after the play and, after a review, Johnson was called for a technical.
The Cats would get a late 6-2 run as Randle hit a big shot and a timely bucket from Dominique Hawkins. Then, Randle had a big spin move for two more. The Cats would trail Wisconsin at the half, 40-36.
Wisconsin hit all 14 of its free throws. Julius Randle and James Young led the way with 9 points each for UK. Andrew Harrison sat a big part of the first half after picking up two fouls.