After a lack of defense over the past five games, the Kentucky Wildcats suffocated the Crimson Tide to 3-14 from outside and only 51 shots overall. However, when the game ended, the Kentucky offense looked a little worse for wear. What was the good, bad, and ugly from Saturday’s win against the Alabama Crimson Tide?
The defense really did shine in the first half and even the second half until Edrice Adebayo fouled out with six minutes remaining. His presence, along with two blocked shots, help seal the middle of the paint.
Dominique Hawkins led the Wildcat bench with two steals and three assists. Malik Monk also had two steals and a block, while De’Aaron Fox contributed with two steals.
This has been the best we have seen the Wildcats’ defense since their 85-69 win over South Carolina, which was the last time they held an opponent to under 70 points.
The offense was struggling to find rhythm and finish off the Crimson Tide until late. They shot 27 for 62 for a 43.5% conversion, which included a 3 for 15 from behind the arc. Monk led all Kentucky players in scoring with 17 points, lower than his 21.9 points per game.
This was the second time in three game, and all season the Wildcats offense failed to score more than 70 points. Luckily this time, unlike their last time, they came out on the winning side of a struggling offensive performance.
The foul trouble was at a season high for regulation time, although they finished with more fouls in the overtime win against Georgia. It is something they can’t afford with tournament time only a little over a month away.
The Wildcats finished with four players flirting with disqualification, De’Aaron Fox, Wenyen Gabriel, Dominique Hawkins, and Isaac Humphries, all having four fouls a piece. Edrice Adebayo fouled out, which allowed Alabama to draw within single digits late to bring the crowd roaring back. Luckily, the Wildcats did just enough to hold onto the win.
The Kentucky Wildcats will look to push their win streak to three, as they look to avenge their first loss of the season, against the Tennessee Volunteers. They will face the Volunteers on Tuesday at Rupp.