What did Kentucky learn from its physical parley with Cincinnati?

03/23/2015 07:32 PM

It’s wasn’t pretty, and at times, it was even downright ugly. But once again, Kentucky found a way to win.

Cincinnati tried to out-physical the No. 1 Wildcats in their second-round matchup in the NCAA tournament on Saturday, and it worked to an extent, as UK started just 3-18 from the field and finished shooting an unimpressive 37% for the game.

But as they have done all season, the undefeated Cats adjusted.

When the outside shots weren’t falling, Kentucky drove to the basket and earned 28 trips to the charity stripe compared to 14 for Cincinnati. And to compensate for its lackluster shooting, UK’s trademark stifling defense held the Bearcats to an even poorer offensive performance, making just 32% of their total shot attempts.

It wasn’t Oscar-worthy, but Kentucky showed it can ugly things up when necessary — an ability that could come in handy again when it faces No. 5 seed West Virginia on Thursday night in the Sweet 16.


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