The Kentucky Wildcats defeated the LSU tigers with a score of 74-71. It was a hard fought victory that showed a lot of growth for this young Wildcat team.
Shai Gilgeous-Alexander is proving time and time again that he is becoming the closer for this team. He’s doing it on both sides of the ball too. Not only did he hit the two biggest free throws of the game to seal the deal against LSU, but he also locked down Georgia’s Tremont Waters at the end of the game by forcing up a horrible three point shot.
Shai continues to play big. This was his third game in a row scoring 18 or more. He added four assists, two rebounds, two steals, and one block. He’s a jack of all trades, and he’s continuing to earn big minutes every game.
The Cats have won three games in a row. Here are some things we’ve learned from these games:
- Much improved perimeter defense. Kentucky started out the season defending the three horrendously. it seemed like the opposing team hit a minimum of 10 threes a game. After giving up 12 threes to UCLA, the Cats have only given up a total of 11 to their last three opponents. This has to continue if they want to succeed in the SEC.
- Learning how to win on the road. These young freshman (and two sophomores) had their first test this season. While it wasn’t too crazy down in Baton Rouge, those fans still had the Pete Maravich Assembly Center rocking. It’s great to see these Cats pull out a tough victory on the road.
- Nick Richards has turned into a ghost. Over his last three games, Nick has seen a significant drop in minutes. He played 17 against Louisville, 3 against Georgia, and 10 against LSU. Yes, he had the flu tonight, but 3 games is the start of a trend. Nick better do something big in practice to earn him some more minutes. He can’t guard the three, and it looks like it’s really hurting his playing time.
Overall, the Cats should be satisfied with this win. It was their first road game of the year, not to mention the starting lineup consists of all freshman.
Kentucky takes on Texas A&M on Saturday at 7 pm EST. It’s going to be another big test for these young Cats.