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Immanuel Quickley shines in second half vs. Vols, including a 3-point dagger

Quickley took over down the stretch after a slow start.

NCAA Basketball: Kentucky at Tennessee Randy Sartin-USA TODAY Sports

The Kentucky Wildcats defeated the Tennessee Volunteers on Saturday, and they were able to pull away at the end behind a strong second half performance from sophomore shooting guard Immanuel Quickley.

Down the stretch, it was Quickley the team turned to. Starting at the seven-minutes mark in the second half all the way down to just 90 seconds remaining, Quickley scored all but four of the Wildcats points, totaling eight of his own.

Quickley led all Wildcats with 18 points and was tied for the game high, despite foul trouble limiting him to just three points in the second half. Time after time, the Vols would rally and make it close, only for Quickley to hit a big shot to push UK’s lead back out.

Quickley and Johnny Juzang were the only two Wildcats to hit threes as well as the two combined to go 5/6 from deep. Quickley ended the game 5/9 from the field and 6/7 from the free throw line.

Juzang, Nick Richards, Tyrese Maxey and Ashton Hagans all notched double figures as well in the team 77-64 victory.

However, it was Quickley who left the biggest mark on the game. With the dagger three to put the game out of reach, Quickley showed the improvement that could eventually make him a first-round draft pick.

Thankfully, while Quickley did explode, this game was about so much more than just one player. As aforementioned, five Wildcats were able to get into double figures. That just goes to show how dominant the team can be.

The Wildcats won their second straight away at Tennessee. Now 8-2 in the SEC, the Cats will be traveling to take on Vanderbilt on Tuesday. The Wildcats next top-25 matchup will come at LSU on February 18.

Let’s hope we get to see this type of dominant performance against a top SEC powerhouse in a few weeks.

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