83
TF 9
FINAL
End
2nd
ESPN
Sat Jan. 27
7:00pm
BONUS
76
TF 12
ML: +465
WVU -10.0, O/U 149.0
ML: -630
UK
WVU

No Text

Knox scores season-high 34, Kentucky beats No. 7 WVU 83-76

MORGANTOWN, W.Va. (AP) Kentucky freshman Kevin Knox enjoys quieting a hostile crowd on the road.

Knox scored a season-high 34 points and the Wildcats overcame a 17-point deficit after halftime to beat No. 7 West Virginia 83-76 in the Big 12/SEC Challenge on Saturday night.

''I love atmospheres like this,'' Knox said. ''I love playing away games and going against people on the road. That was something that I loved growing up, when the other team starts yelling and all of the hype, the student section. All of that just gets me going. It's just something I live for.''

Knox eclipsed his previous high of 25 points against Illinois-Chicago on Nov. 26.

The 6-foot-9 forward scored 19 points in the second half Saturday, when Kentucky (16-5) pulled together after looking disjointed earlier in the game.

After halftime, Kentucky made all 18 of its free throw attempts and outrebounded West Virginia 29-13 after the teams were even on the boards in the first half. The freshmen-laden Wildcats also limited their mistakes when it mattered, committing five second-half turnovers after turning it over 11 times in the first half.

''To be able to do that in this environment means we are growing up,'' coach John Calipari said.

Behind senior guard Jevon Carter, West Virginia (16-5) dominated the first half and it appeared the Mountaineers might keep the momentum going. Then Knox got hot and his teammates joined in.

It marked the third time in five games that West Virginia has blown a double-digit lead in the second half.

''They took us out of some things,'' coach Bob Huggins said. ''We had some guys who are going to be heroes rather than team players. And the truth of the matter is they are just better than we are. They're more talented.''

Sagaba Konate's bank shot put West Virginia ahead 54-37 early in the second half but he missed much of the stretch run in foul trouble. Kentucky took advantage, getting more aggressive inside both with rebounds and scoring.

Knox scored 12 points during a 21-2 run, capped by his dunk with 10:39 left for a 58-56 lead.

West Virginia backup guard James ''Beetle'' Bolden, a Kentucky native who said he had been waiting for this opportunity to play his home-state school, hit a 3-pointer to tie the score at 74 with 1:23 left. But West Virginia didn't make another basket.

Knox's 3-pointer with 1:05 remaining put Kentucky ahead to stay. Nick Richards dunked off a rebound with 30 seconds left, and Quade Green and Wenyen Gabriel each sank two free throws after that to seal the win.

''A lot of people said we were having trouble finishing games,'' Knox said. ''But we knew that we were going to come back and win this game.''

Hamidou Diallo added 13 points for Kentucky. Jarred Vanderbilt, playing just his fourth game, had 11 rebounds.

Carter finished with 26 points. Bolden added 17 points and Konate had 13 points and seven blocked shots.

BIG PICTURE

Kentucky: The Wildcats beat a ranked team for the first time this season and have won two straight since dropping out of the AP Top 25 last Monday for the first time since March 2014.

West Virginia: The Mountaineers have lost two straight and four of their last five games after being ranked No. 2 two weeks ago, their highest ranking since December 1959.

NO REVENGE

Carter and fellow senior guard Daxter Miles Jr. were freshmen in 2014-15 when West Virginia was pummeled by Kentucky 78-39 in the Midwest Regional semifinals of the NCAA Tournament in Cleveland. This time, Carter shot 3 of 10 after halftime while Miles finished with seven points overall on 2-of-8 shooting.

POLL IMPLICATIONS

Kentucky could move back into the AP poll after a 2-0 week. West Virginia will likely tumble out of the Top 10.

UP NEXT

Kentucky: Hosts Vanderbilt on Tuesday.

West Virginia: Plays at Iowa State on Wednesday. The Mountaineers have lost two straight Big 12 road games.

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More AP college basketball: https://collegebasketball.ap.org and https://twitter.com/AP-Top25

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Follow John Raby at https://www.twitter.com/jrabyap

Copyright 2018 by AP. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of AP is strictly prohibited.

Key Players
S. Gilgeous-Alexander
22 G
J. Carter
2 G
35.0 Min. Per Game 35.0
16.9 Pts. Per Game 16.9
6.5 Ast. Per Game 6.5
5.2 Reb. Per Game 5.2
47.3 Field Goal % 41.1
40.7 Three Point % 40.5
80.3 Free Throw % 85.9
  Offensive rebound by Chase Harler 0.0
  James Bolden missed 3-pt. jump shot 0.0
+ 1 Wenyen Gabriel made 2nd of 2 free throws 4.0
+ 1 Wenyen Gabriel made 1st of 2 free throws 4.0
  Personal foul on Jevon Carter 4.0
+ 1 Jevon Carter made 2nd of 2 free throws 8.0
+ 1 Jevon Carter made 1st of 2 free throws 8.0
  Shooting foul on Wenyen Gabriel 8.0
  Offensive rebound by West Virginia 13.0
  Jevon Carter missed 3-pt. jump shot 15.0
+ 1 Quade Green made 2nd of 2 free throws 19.0
Team Stats
Points 83 76
Field Goals 26-58 (44.8%) 27-68 (39.7%)
3-Pointers 8-18 (44.4%) 10-24 (41.7%)
Free Throws 23-29 (79.3%) 12-18 (66.7%)
Total Rebounds 49 34
Offensive 20 14
Defensive 27 16
Team 2 4
Assists 16 12
Steals 1 6
Blocks 7 7
Turnovers 16 6
Fouls 20 24
Technicals 0 0
34 PTS, 7 REB
26 PTS, 3 REB, 7 AST
12T
away team logo Kentucky 16-5 335083
home team logo 7 West Virginia 16-5 482876
Team Stats
away team logo Kentucky 16-5 80.1 PPG 40.9 RPG 14.3 APG
home team logo 7 West Virginia 16-5 75.2 PPG 45.2 RPG 13.3 APG
Key Players
00
K. Knox F PPG RPG APG FG%
00
J. Carter G PPG RPG APG FG%
Top Scorers
K. Knox F 34 PTS 7 REB 0 AST
J. Carter G 26 PTS 3 REB 7 AST
44.8 FG% 39.7
44.4 3PT FG% 41.7
79.3 FT% 66.7
Starters PTS REB AST FG 3PT FT PF MIN STL BLK TO OREB DREB
K. Knox 34 7 0 11/17 5/8 7/8 1 35 0 0 1 4 3
H. Diallo 13 3 2 4/8 1/1 4/5 3 25 0 0 2 1 2
N. Richards 9 8 0 2/4 0/0 5/6 4 20 0 1 2 2 6
S. Gilgeous-Alexander 6 5 5 3/7 0/1 0/2 2 32 0 2 4 0 5
P. Washington 2 2 0 1/3 0/0 0/0 3 11 0 1 2 1 1
Starters PTS REB AST FG 3PT FT PF MIN STL BLK TO OREB DREB
K. Knox 34 7 0 11/17 5/8 7/8 1 35 0 0 1 4 3
H. Diallo 13 3 2 4/8 1/1 4/5 3 25 0 0 2 1 2
N. Richards 9 8 0 2/4 0/0 5/6 4 20 0 1 2 2 6
S. Gilgeous-Alexander 6 5 5 3/7 0/1 0/2 2 32 0 2 4 0 5
P. Washington 2 2 0 1/3 0/0 0/0 3 11 0 1 2 1 1
Bench PTS REB AST FG 3PT FT PF MIN STL BLK TO OREB DREB
Q. Green 8 2 4 2/5 2/4 2/2 1 27 1 0 4 0 2
W. Gabriel 6 9 3 1/7 0/4 4/4 3 28 0 3 0 5 4
S. Killeya-Jones 4 0 0 2/2 0/0 0/0 2 11 0 0 0 0 0
J. Vanderbilt 1 11 2 0/5 0/0 1/2 1 11 0 0 1 7 4
J. David - - - - - - - - - - - - -
D. Pulliam - - - - - - - - - - - - -
T. Wynyard - - - - - - - - - - - - -
B. Calipari - - - - - - - - - - - - -
J. Baker - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Total 83 47 16 26/58 8/18 23/29 20 200 1 7 16 20 27
Starters PTS REB AST FG 3PT FT PF MIN STL BLK TO OREB DREB
J. Carter 26 3 7 9/20 4/5 4/4 2 38 2 0 2 1 2
S. Konate 13 6 1 6/9 0/0 1/3 4 23 1 7 0 2 4
D. Miles Jr. 7 1 3 2/8 0/4 3/4 2 27 1 0 1 0 1
L. West 5 3 0 1/3 0/1 3/3 2 15 0 0 1 1 2
W. Harris 2 3 0 1/4 0/1 0/1 4 14 0 0 0 1 2
Starters PTS REB AST FG 3PT FT PF MIN STL BLK TO OREB DREB
J. Carter 26 3 7 9/20 4/5 4/4 2 38 2 0 2 1 2
S. Konate 13 6 1 6/9 0/0 1/3 4 23 1 7 0 2 4
D. Miles Jr. 7 1 3 2/8 0/4 3/4 2 27 1 0 1 0 1
L. West 5 3 0 1/3 0/1 3/3 2 15 0 0 1 1 2
W. Harris 2 3 0 1/4 0/1 0/1 4 14 0 0 0 1 2
Bench PTS REB AST FG 3PT FT PF MIN STL BLK TO OREB DREB
J. Bolden 17 1 0 6/12 5/10 0/0 1 17 0 0 1 0 1
C. Harler 3 2 0 1/2 1/2 0/0 1 10 0 0 0 1 1
M. Bender 2 4 0 1/1 0/0 0/0 1 19 1 0 0 2 2
T. Allen 1 1 1 0/2 0/0 1/3 2 8 0 0 0 1 0
E. Ahmad 0 4 0 0/7 0/1 0/0 1 20 1 0 1 3 1
L. Routt 0 2 0 0/0 0/0 0/0 3 9 0 0 0 2 0
D. Hunter - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Total 76 30 12 27/68 10/24 12/18 24 200 6 7 6 14 16