LEXINGTON, Ky. – Second ranked Kentucky Basketball will open the season Tuesday night in Indianapolis against fourth rated Duke. Friday night, the Wildcats had one more dress rehearsal to get ready for that monster game in the Champions Classic.
Reid Travis led Kentucky to a 86-64 win by scoring 22 points and pulling down 14 rebounds. Here are some other notes from the game against Indiana University of Pennsylvania.
· The Wildcats begin the 2018-19 regular-season with a top-five matchup with No. 4/3 Duke in Indianapolis as part of the Champions Classic on Tuesday. Tip time is set for 9:30 p.m. ET inside of Bankers Life Fieldhouse.
· UK improved to 136-12 all-time in exhibition games.
· Kentucky has won its last 15 exhibition games dating back to Nov. 2, 2014, vs. Pikeville.
· Friday night pitted John Calipari vs. his longtime friend Joe Lombardi, head coach of IUP. Lombardi’s son, Dominic, was a video assistant on UK’s staff during the 2012-13 and 2013-14 seasons before heading to South Florida with former UK assistant Orlando Antigua to be the video coordinator. Dominic Lombardi is now the director of basketball operations at Morehead State under another current UK staff, Preston Spradlin.
· Kentucky used the combination of Ashton Hagans, Tyler Herro, Keldon Johnson, PJ Washington, and Reid Travis to start the game. This is the second different starting combination for the Wildcats during the exhibition slate. Washington and Travis started the first game.
· Kentucky won the opening tip and Travis found Herro on a kick out for a 3-pointer for the game’s first bucket.
· IUP scored the next four points, but Washington drained UK’s second 3-pointer with 18:34 to go for a 6-4 lead for the Cats.
· IUP put together another 4-0 run to knot the score at eight apiece, but UK answered with a lay-in from Travis on the next possession.
· After draining a 3-pointer on one end, Johnson came down to the defensive side and took a charge with 10:38 remaining. The effort by Johnson propelled a 12-0 run by the home team for a 28-13 edge with 9:30 to go, prompting an IUP timeout.
· The run extended to 14-0 and a 30-13 lead. It lasted over a 5:42 period on the clock.
· IUP fought back and pulled to within six with just over 30 seconds to play in the half before Herro knocked down his fourth 3-pointer of the stanza for the halftime margin of 43-34.
· Travis nearly had a double-double in the opening half alone with team highs in points (15) and rebounds (eight).
· Johnson and Hagans both dished out four assists as Kentucky assisted on 13 of its 17 first-half baskets.
· Kentucky’s starting lineup also began the second half as the first five for the first time in the two exhibition games.
· IUP trimmed the deficit to five on two different occasions, the latest at 49-44 with 15:28.
· Nick Richards finished an alley-oop on the break with 14:10 to play to give UK a double-figure lead once again up 55-44.
· The Cats knocked down all 13 of their first free throws to earn an 18-point lead after Johnson made two to increase the lead to 77-59 with 4:53 to play.
· Kentucky’s largest lead came with 1:34 to go when Herro sunk his fifth 3-pointer of the night to give UK a 24-point edge at 86-62.
· After only making one 3-pointer in its first exhibition against Transylvania, Kentucky began the game by making each of its first three 3-point attempts and finished the game with nine. Kentucky shot 40.9 percent from behind the arc (9 of 22).
· Kentucky shot 50 percent or better in both of its exhibition games, also shooting 56.9 percent against Transylvania.
· UK went 19 for 21 from the free-throw line in the game for 90.5 percent. Combined in the two exhibition games UK shot (46 of 57) 80.7 percent.
· Friday’s free-throw percentage would have ranked as the seventh best in a game under Calipari if it were a regular-season game.
· Kentucky dominated in the paint once again with a 38-20 advantage in points and a 27-16 edge on the boards.
· UK also had an 8-2 edge in second-chance points.
· The Wildcats had 17 assists on 29 made baskets. Thirteen of those assists came in the first half.
· Reid Travis put together his second straight double-double with team highs in points (22) and rebounds (14).
· He was the game’s leading scorer and rebounder.
· Tyler Herro scored 17 points and knocked down five 3-pointers.
· He also had four rebounds and four assists.
· PJ Washington poured in 20 points on 8-of-9 shooting.
· He also added six rebounds and a game-high three blocks.
· He was a perfect 3 for 3 from the free-throw line.
· Keldon Johnson had 11 points and a team-high five assists.