The Kentucky Wildcats tipped off the 2022-23 season with a commanding win over the Howard Bison, 95-63.
Kentucky had to work with eight scholarship players as Oscar Tshiebwe, Sahvir Wheeler, and Daimion Collins were all out for this matchup with the Bison. That showed early as you could see some clear first game jitters throughout the first ten minutes of the half. But once they settled in, the Cats flashed some serious potential on both ends of the floor, and took a 49-26 into the locker room.
John Calipari’s squad did not slow down out once they got back onto the court, as the talent gapped showed greatly against the Bison. Despite that though, the Cats played well on both ends of the floor as they made a statement defensively, while also proving they can score it from all three levels. And all of that with two of their starters.
Cason Wallace impressed in his first collegiate game, while Antonio Reeves and CJ Fredrick showed they could become the UK version of the ‘Splash Brothers’ with their ability to knock down the three.
The Cats will be back in action on Friday at 7PM ET as they welcome Duquesne to Rupp Arena.
Now let’s check out how Twitter reacted to the win over the Bison:
Kentucky almost certainly without Oscar Tshiebwe and Daimion Collins for the opener and likely no Sahvir Wheeler. Could be a sneaky tough game against Howard with just eight scholarship guys available and two starters out. https://t.co/91m3rwPB5e— Kyle Tucker (@KyleTucker_ATH) November 7, 2022
6-6 at the first media timeout. Howard has had an open three just about every time down the floor. Howard getting the ball into the paint then kicking out. Cats have to do a better job staying in front of the ball. @KentuckyRivals— David Sisk (@CoachDavidSisk) November 7, 2022
7 footers should not move their feet the way Ugonna Onyenso does.— Mitch Brown FOX 56 (@MitchBTV_) November 7, 2022
Howard continues to go at Ugonna Onyenso. It continues to be a poor decision.— Jack Pilgrim (@JackPilgrimKSR) November 7, 2022
Keep shooting!— Nick Roush (@RoushKSR) November 7, 2022
File this under "Things I didn't expect to see today" https://t.co/qol43iAJGP— Tyler Thompson (@MrsTylerKSR) November 8, 2022
Chris Livingston with some solid early minutes for the Cats, playing within the offense and making good decisions. Just had a smooth offensive rebound and follow-up score— Jack Pilgrim (@JackPilgrimKSR) November 8, 2022
Kentucky started 0 for 5 from 3. Made 5 of 7 to close the first half.— Kyle Tucker (@KyleTucker_ATH) November 8, 2022
Antonio Reeves (13 points), CJ Fredrick (11), Jacob Toppin (9 and 8 boards) and Cason Wallace (8 points, 5 rebounds, 4 assists) were very good.
HALFTIME: UK 49, Howard 26 pic.twitter.com/Va4nlpyX6X
The first word I associate with Cason Wallace is winner. The second is value. Affects winning in so many ways: 8 points, 5 rebounds, 4 assists, and 2 steals at halftime of his first game.— Chris Fisher (@ChrisFisher247) November 8, 2022
CJ Fredrick leading the way with 15 points on 4-6 FG, 1-3 3PT, 6-7 FT to go with two rebounds, two assists and a steal.— Jack Pilgrim (@JackPilgrimKSR) November 8, 2022
Kentucky shooting 56.8%, 12 assists on 21 makes, just give turnovers while forcing a dozen TOs by Howard that have led to 14 points. This is strong stuff while short-handed on opening night. https://t.co/Vh5ebmYwMZ— Kyle Tucker (@KyleTucker_ATH) November 8, 2022
Antonio Reeves tonight tied the school record for most points scored by a transfer in their debut for @KentuckyMBB (22). Reid Travis also scored 22 points in his debut against Duke on November 6th, 2018.— Corey Price (@coreyp08) November 8, 2022
Antonio Reeves' six 3s are the most-ever by any player in a Kentucky debut. The previous record was 3 shared by Patrick Sparks, Doron Lamb, Tyrese Maxey, and Kellan Grady.— TheCatsPause247 (@TheCatsPause247) November 8, 2022
Just something to keep your eye on this season.— Tristan Pharis (@TristanUda) November 8, 2022
UK's single game record for 3P made in a single game is 10 by Jodie Meeks (2009).
Antonio Reeves has 6 tonight and had 5 against Kentucky State.
That is not even mentioning CJ Fredrick, a 47% career three-point shooter. #BBN
Calipari on SEC Network postgame with the kinda wide-eyed: "Cason at point was pretty good, so now we know we've got two really good point guards." https://t.co/DmOdKQRZw2— Kyle Tucker (@KyleTucker_ATH) November 8, 2022