LEXINGTON, Ky. (LEX 18) — Kentucky avoided its second four-game losing streak of the season with a 82-69 win over LSU Saturday at Rupp Arena.
The offense looked phenomenal in the first half, leading to a season-high 49 points in the opening 20 minutes of play. The 82 overall points scored is also a season-high.
The Wildcats took advantage of the LSU press, which allowed them to open the floor and run. We all know they love to do that so thanks to Will Wade for the subpar gameplan.
We were looking at threes, alley oops, all of that fun stuff you like to see out of any team. Kentucky opened the game 5-8 from downtown before cooling off a little bit, but it was enough to give Kentucky a comfortable 49-36 halftime lead.
Kentucky would start the second half playing like they have been the previous three games; Not good.
It allowed LSU to climb back into the game with a 13-5 run, cutting Kentucky's lead to 54-49 with 15:54 to go.
But a couple of buckets from Brandon Boston Jr. helped keep the game just out of reach. Boston turned in his second straight solid performance following an 18-point outing Wednesday at Georgia.
He led the Wildcats with 18 points and added 6 rebounds. This is a good sign for Big Blue Nation, hopefully Boston has finally turned the corner.
Boston was complimented by a lot of players Saturday, as three other Wildcats scored in double-figures.
Keion Brooks Jr. had 15 points (5-8 FG) and 9 rebounds.
Olivier Sarr had 13 points and 5 rebounds was 7-8 from the free throw line.
Oh yeah, Kentucky was 21-26 as a team from the free throw line, a much better outcome than Wednesday at Georgia.
Davion Mintz added 11 points, while Dontaie Allen, Lance Ware, Jacob Toppin, and Isaiah Jackson all had at least 6 points. Jackson added 15 rebounds as well.
This was the third straight game where Kentucky has held its opponent to less than 70 points. Now, since I feel like being optimistic, if the defense can continue to play the way they have recently, and maybe get more production on the offensive end like Saturday, the NCAA Tournament could still be in reach!
A key part to Saturday's offensive outing was 15 assists to Kentucky's 27 made field goals. However, 13 of those assists were in the first half.
The Wildcats dominated the glass, outrebounding LSU 46-31, which included 13 offensive rebounds for the Cats.
Now, Kentucky will head back on the road, traveling to Tuscaloosa to face a red hot Alabama team that beat them by 20 just a week and a half ago at Rupp Arena.
The Crimson Tide are 8-0 in SEC play and can shoot the lights out from beyond the arc. It'll be a tough challenge for Kentucky, but at least they have some sort of momentum heading into it. Tip-off is scheduled for 7 p.m.