Well, that was different. The Kentucky Wildcats once again found themselves getting run off the floor in transition, and in the process, piling up fouls on their starters. For a few moments in the middle of the half, it looked like MSU might take enough of a lead to defend to the half. But then Calipari put in little-used sub Jon Hood along with Jarrod Polson to spell the foul-hampered James Young and Andrew Harrison, and a bit of magic happened.
Suddenly, Kentucky made smarter plays, went to a zone that stifled the Bulldogs, and built up a 9-point lead. I confess, it was as much MSU's pathetic offense as anything Kentucky did, but UK did force a couple of turnovers in the zone, and managed not to give up a bunch of offensive rebounds.
Here are the stats for the first half:
Halftime box score from UK-Mississippi State: pic.twitter.com/VVXOTqF1oS— Kentucky Athletics (@UKAthleticsNews) February 8, 2014
I don't think anyone is happy about how Kentucky played in the half, but honestly, I'm pretty pleased with the outcome and tickled to death at how well Hood played, swishing a corner three and getting 2 big rebounds.
Once again, Kentucky is struggling to make threes, but they are shooting too many to begin with, jacking up 11 in the first half. The Wildcats haven't exactly distinguished themselves from the line, but they did hold the Bulldogs to 28% from the field and 0-3 from the arc.
Let's hope we see better basketball from the 'Cats in the second half.