A day after his 19th birthday, Tyrese Maxey scored 26 points, the most points by a Kentucky freshman in a debut in school history, topping Terrence Jones’ mark of 25 (Nov. 12, 2010). That included a clutch three-point that beat the shot clock with a minute left en route to a 69-62 win for the No. 2 Wildcats, who will likely move to the top spot in the next round of top-25 polls.
The Wildcats’ defense suffocated the veteran Spartans for much of the game, holding them to only 24 points while forcing 10 turnovers in the first half. They finished the game 22/56 from the field with more turnovers (16) than assists (14). The Wildcats improved to 188-16 under John Calipari when holding the opponent to 40% or less from the floor. Kentucky is also 174-7 under Calipari when limiting opponents to 63 points or less.
With the win, Kentucky head coach Calipari improved to 6-4 against No. 1 teams, including 3-2 at Kentucky.
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