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#24 UK Women’s BB vs. Mizzou

The Cats look to stop their 2 game skid and maintain their position in the Top 25

NCAA Women's Basketball: Kentucky at Tennessee Knoxville News Sentinel-USA TODAY NETWORK

The Kentucky women are, in a word, struggling. Warren Taylor did a great post-game recap after Sunday’s loss in Knoxville, and Scott Levy did an equally awesome job in level setting where the ladies are after back to back losses (Be sure to give them a read!), but for those of you in the TL;DR camp, see below:

  • While we’re super excited about Taylor Murray’s return to the lineup, and she’s had two back to back monster games, we need some other players to get going. I love me some Makayla Epps but 8 points and 4 rebounds is just not the performance we’ve come to expect from her. To be successful in SEC play, we need all of our starters to be hitting double figures.
  • I’m going to cut Makenzie Cann a break, because playing in a face mask cannot be easy OR fun, but the lack of threes of late has really killed us. We were 5/16 at Duke (a not so great 31% to their 46%) and were 2/16 in Knoxvegas on Sunday. 7 made three pointers in 2 games? Not good.
  • The lone bright spot of late has been FTs. Kentucky hit 87% on Sunday and 72% against Duke, bringing their season average to 74%. If we can keep working this part of the game, it’s an additional tool in our arsenal....particularly when the shot are (not) falling, like they’ve been of late.

Which brings us to today’s game against Mizzou. Thankfully it’s at home, and even more thankfully, it’s televised. So we can cheer them on however you chose to partake!

Missouri is currently 11-4, and 1-0 in conference play. The only ranked team they’ve faced so far this season was Washington, a game they dropped 66-79. (In case you’re curious, STD Kentucky’s RPI is #17, while Mizzou’s is #49th.)

Mizzou has two really key players to watch in Cierra Porter and Sophie Cunningham. Cierra leads the team in scoring, averaging 15.7 PPG, and is also the Tiger’s leading rebounder, averaging 9.3 RPG. Cierra is a very good field shooter at 47%. Sophie is close on Cierra’s heels in scoring, averaging 15.5 PPG, and averages 45% from the field and 32% from outside.

Overall Mizzou is VERY good at the charity stripe, hitting 79% of their shots on the season. If Kentucky isn’t hitting their shots, and Mizzou gets chances at the line, this could be a very difficult game to watch.

What does Kentucky have to do to walk home a winner?

  1. Pick shots and then MAKE shots!
  2. Lock down on defense.
  4. Get multiple players going to stretch the offense.

I have zero expectations coming into this game, but know Matthew Mitchell and the staff will have level set for the team what it means to PROTECT THIS HOUSE. I hope to see it all come together for the Cats tonight, because another loss will knock them out of the top 25, and with the gauntlet that is SEC play, it could knock them out of a decent shot in the tourney.

Tipoff is at 7 PM EST on the SEC Network. Hope to see you in the comments! Until gametime - GO BIG BLUE!