Sloppy play dooms Kentucky in 79-73 loss to Kansas

01/28/2017 08:45 PM

The second-ranked Kansas Jayhawks knocked off the fourth-ranked Kentucky Wildcats 79 to 73 tonight at Rupp Arena.

Kentucky falls to 17-4 (7-1) on the season and has now lost two games in a row. Meanwhile, Kansas rebounded from Tuesday’s loss to West Virginia and improved to 19-2 (7-1) on the season.

The Wildcats went into the half with a 32-27 lead. John Calipari’s squad had a 12-point lead at one point in the first half, but sloppy play down the stretch allowed Kansas to go into the half only down five. The Jayhawks, who came into the game shooting 41.8% from the three-point line, were 0-8 from beyond the arc in the first half.

Kansas freshman Josh Jackson finally got his team going from three, hitting back-to-back three-pointers to open the second half to give Kansas a 33-32 lead.

Kentucky was clinging on to a 59-58 lead with 8:13 left in the game before Kansas went on an 11-0 run to take a 69-59 lead. That lead ultimately gave the Jayhawks enough cushion to hold onto the win.

Kentucky committed 17 turnovers, led by De’Aaron Fox’s five. Kansas scored 21 points off of those turnovers.

The Wildcats shot 47% from the field and 40% from three, but couldn’t knock down their free throws. Kentucky went just 13-22 from the charity stripe.

Malik Monk and Derek Willis both scored 18 points. Willis made a career-high five three-pointers. Three other Wildcats scored in double-figures. Isaiah Briscoe had 12 and both Bam Adebayo and De’Aaron Fox had 10 points.

Kansas’ Josh Jackson led the way, scoring 20 points and grabbing 10 rebounds.

Kentucky returns to action on Tuesday against Georgia at Rupp Arena. Tip is set for 9 pm.

Clayton Abernathy

Clayton is a Producer for Spectrum News. He graduated with a Journalism degree from the University of Kentucky and he lives and breathes UK Basketball, making him the perfect fit to produce KSTV. That’s Kentucky’s only nightly half-hour show dedicated solely to UK sports. You can watch it weeknights at 7:30 and 11 on Spectrum News. Follow Clayton on twitter @ClaySTV1 to stay updated on the latest UK Basketball and recruiting news or to follow his amateur competitive eating endeavors. He once ate thirteen cheese Coney hot dogs in one sitting…on his lunch break.

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