LEX18 — It was a tough early going for Kentucky, Miles College led 16-7 at the first TV timeout in the first half. The Golden Bears opened the game going four for four from behind the arc. Jacob Toppin who missed the first exhibition against Kentucky Wesleyan checked in with just over 13:00 minutes and caught a pass from Bryce Hopkins and dunked the ball to cut the lead to 17-12. Golden Bears stayed hot but the veteran Cats would settle down to cut the lead to 2 after Sahvir Wheeler hit a three to bring the score to 28-26 at the under eight TV timeout.
At half Miles went to the locker room with a 7 point lead shooting 58.6 % from the field and a blistering 11-15 from the three point line. Five different Golden Bears connected from deep in the first half. For the Cats, Kellan Grady led the way with 11 points. Kentucky played multiple lineups, 11 wildcats saw action in the first half. Kentucky had a good half offensively as well shooting 45 % from the field and making 6 threes of their own shooting better than 50% behind the arc. Oscar Tshiebwe and Jacob Toppin both dealing with minor injuries played less than 10 minutes the first half, CJ Fredrick was not yet ready to see the floor, Coach Calipari announced on the pre-game radio show he wouldn't play in the game.
The halftime speech worked, Kentucky opened the second half on a 14-2. After taking the lead on a Sahvir Wheeler layup the 49-48 the Wildcats never looked back winning the exhibition 80-71. Sahvir Wheeler and TyTy Washington led all scorers with 15 points apiece. Kentucky continued shooting well behind the arc finishing 11-19 from three. 11 Wildcats played at least 10 minutes, it was clear Coach Calipari was experimenting with his rotations. Washington and Wheeler each played over 30 minutes on the night.
Next up for Kentucky is a road trip to New York City for the Champions Classic in Madison Square Garden Tuesday, Nov. 9th at 9:30 PM versus top ten ranked Duke in the first official game of the regular season.