SportsBBN Tonight


Kentucky cruises to 85-57 win over Central Michigan

john calipari tony barbee
Posted at 8:57 PM, Nov 29, 2021
and last updated 2021-11-29 20:57:06-05

LEXINGTON, Ky. — This one was never in doubt. Kentucky got off to its best start of the season and didn't let up, as the Wildcats cruised to a 85-57 win over Central Michigan inside Rupp Arena Monday night. UK's record is 6-1 this season, while the Chippewas now sit at 1-5.

Oscar Tshiebwe led all scorers with 20 points and 16 rebounds, TyTy Washington added 15 points, and Sahvir Wheeler had seven points and six assists. Davion Mintz did not play due to illness, but every other Wildcat checked into the game at some point.

After two quick buckets by Washington to start the game, Kentucky never looked back. In UK's first 13 possessions, the Cats scored on 11 of them, eventually going on 16-0 and 14-0 runs. The Wildcats scored 51 points in the first half - the most points the Cats has scored in the first 20 minutes of action so far this season - and led 51-25 at the break.

In the second, it was more of the same from both teams. The score continued to reflect Kentucky's dominance, and UK's defense, especially around the perimeter, continued to show improvement. Tshiebwe officially recorded his sixth double-double of the season with more than 17 minutes remaining in the game. As the game wore on, the Cats' offensive efficiency trailed, eventually settling down at 32 percent in the second half on 11-for-24 shooting from the floor. On the game, Kentucky went 31-72 for 43 percent. Kentucky finished the night shooting 26.9 percent from the 3-point line and 66.7 percent from the charity stripe.

Walk-on players Kareem Watkins, Brennan Canada and Zan Payne checked in with 1:19 remaining in the game.

The matchup was a homecoming for former Kentucky basketball assistant coach Tony Barbee, who is currently in his first year as Central Michigan's head coach.