OXFORD, Miss. — In a game to hopefully spark some kind of momentum heading into next week's SEC Tournament, Kentucky dropped yet another close game, falling 70-62 to Ole Miss Tuesday night.
Wash, rinse, repeat.
"It’s just disappointing because all I keep saying is, look, we’ve just got to worry about us being our best. Well, you’ve got guys who are trying to be cute," said head coach John Calipari. "I don’t know. I don’t have an answer. When it’s you and that guy and he throws you to the floor or you’re not ready to battle or you don’t hit first, you’re not going to get the ball."
The Wildcats once again had the victory within reach in the final minutes before Ole Miss closed the game on a 17-10 run to hand them their ninth loss in SEC play.
Some of the final numbers on the stat sheet were really eye opening.
Kentucky had 16 assists and only turned the ball over 7 times. Well that's good.
But, Kentucky was outrebounded 42-28. Got it.
"And all I’m telling them is, like I said after, ‘You get beat by 16 rebounds, you’re not winning. You guys act like you want to win. Then go get balls, go get rebounds.’ We started the game, we didn’t rebound. We were down seven rebounds, or eight, at half, I think. And the whole game plan was, just like Tennessee, you have to fight and take that out of the game," Calipari.
After several games of immaculate shooting from the free throw line, Kentucky was 15-25 Tuesday. Got it.
Oh. Ole Miss was averaging 4 made 3-pt a game heading into Tuesday. They made 8 against the Wildcats. Got it.
There was a lot of eye rolling throughout this game, but what else is new for this season?
Four Kentucky players scored in double figures. Keion Brooks Jr. led the team with 16 points and 8 rebounds.
Olivier Sarr finished with 15 points and was 8-10 from the free throw line. Isaiah Jackson has 13 points before fouling out, which has been an issue all year with him.
And Davion Mintz finished with 10 points and had a season-high 8 assists, most likely solidifying that he should be the main point guard heading into the tournament over Devin Askew.
Four Ole Miss players scored in double figures as well. Devontae Shuler led the way with 17 points while KJ Buffen finished with 16 points and 10 rebounds before fouling out with 4 minutes to play. Romello White also had a double-double with 11 points and 10 rebounds.
Kentucky will wrap up its regular season Saturday against South Carolina. Tip-off is scheduled for noon at Rupp Arena.