The 5th ranked Kentucky Wildcats put the game on autopilot this afternoon and snoozed away to a 73-56 win over the East Tennessee State Buccaneers. After UK had put up monstrous numbers on the offensive end up to this point in the season, the Cats were unable to assert their dominance this afternoon and had to go back to their defensive ways to win.
Coach Mitchell on the other hand was not that concerned. The high octane play that the crowd loves wasn’t on display today, but he was pleased his team still found a way to beat a team by double-digits. “I wasn’t that disappointed, we held them without a field goal for a very long time. When you have played 11 games, the team has created real high expectations with their fine play, so it’s a compliment to them that we aren’t as excited about this victory as we would be.”
The Stallworth-less Wildcats were led by Samarie Walker and Janee Thompson who both had 12 points. Walker seemed disappointed after today’s victory citing “a lack of effort and focus” by the whole team today. With Duke on the horizon, UK can’t afford to be this lifeless ever again. Hayley and I both deduced that the women must have been hanging around the men’s team too often, as the Cats shot a dismal and uncharacteristic 44.8% from the free throw line today, and simply looked unenthusiastic and flat throughout.
ETSU’s coach Brittney Ezell was an absolute class act in today’s game. A former SEC women’s basketball player herself at Alabama, you could tell she gets it. She was eternally grateful and thankful for the chance to play today’s game, applauding how great the UK fans were and how great the opportunity was. “Our goal in this game was to hold Kentucky to 80, which isn’t normal for most teams, but we succeeded”. 2She even took a moment to shake each official on UK’s media staff after the game today. What a woman.
It wasn’t the best, but hey, we won. This team is now 11-0, which ties a school record to open the season, and the Cats have the opportunity to continue to make history. Kentucky plays host to Duke at Rupp Arena on Sunday afternoon in a top five match up with the Blue Devils…AND if you go you have a chance for part ownership of a thoroughbred horse named Patinka. Why wouldn’t you go?