New game, same first half result. Once again Kentucky struggled out of the gate, and set their second half up for a tough comeback. This go-around it was anemic shooting in the first half that resulted in multiple scoring runs for Missouri.
With the game tied at 9-9, Missouri went on a 7-0 run to take control of the first half. Kentucky would cut the Tigers lead to just two on a Shai Gilgeous-Alexander layup, but would come no closer in half number one. Kentucky shot just 20% in the first half on 6-30 shooting, including 0-9 from behind the three point stripe. The Wildcats six field goals were tied for fewest of the season. They had that many in the first half on New Years Eve when they hosted Georgia. The 18 points were their fewest in a half this year.
The shooting woes allowed Missouri to compile a 8-0 run and close the half with a 28-18 lead, their largest of the entire first half.
Missouri shot the ball just 39%, not a dynamic number, but it sure looked like it next to the Wildcats stat line.
Jarred Vanderbilt led the way for Kentucky with six points, however four of his points came at the free throw stripe, where he went 4-4. Vanderbilt was just 1-3 from the field and finished the half on the bench after receiving a flagrant 1 foul. No Wildcat player hit more than one field goal in half number one.
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