Saturday, January 10, 2015

Cats Survive Double OT to Beat Texas A&M 70-64

After what Kentucky accomplished during their non-conference games, would you had believed me if I told you that after demolishing 5 ranked opponents that they would start conference play with an overtime game and then a double-overtime game? Nope and I wouldn't have believed it either, but that's exactly what has happened over the last few days.

Going into today's game, Kentucky looked (on paper at least) to dominate Texas A&M much like they have pretty much everyone else not named Ole Miss. But, apparently the Aggies had different thoughts as they pretty much dominated the Cats in the first half and part of the second. Whatever A&M wanted to do on offense, they done with ease. Time and time again, the Aggies was able to take their man off the dribble for what was pretty much an uncontested lay-up. It was hard to watch to be honest, Kentucky just didn't play with any energy or urgency what-so-ever throughout the entire first half and the that's worrisome is that makes two games in a row that we have see that type of performance.

The second half saw Kentucky tighten up on defense and execute it more effectively which in turn led to better offense. Feeding off their defense, Kentucky finally took their first lead early in the second half and stretched it out to six before the Aggies rallied back to take a two point lead of their own. During the run by A&M we saw Kentucky once again revert  back to playing effortless defense and struggle to find it's offense. Kentucky's struggles on the offensive end of things is thanks to A&M's defense that they played almost to perfection. It wasn't nothing special, mixing between man-to-man and zone, that's it. So, from this point on, Kentucky will see a zone in every single game they play because they have shown that they have no answer for it and if I was a betting man, I'd say Kentucky's first loss will come at the hands of a team that plays a good zone defense. That's something that they will have to address going forward otherwise, every team in America no have the blueprint to beat Kentucky.

Kentucky didn't deserve to win this game by any stretch of the imagination. They were out played and out hustled for almost the entirety of the game, but for them to pull out the W says something about how good this team really is. Then when you add in the fact that 3 of Kentucky's 5 starters (Cauley-Stein, Towns Jr and Aaron Harrison) fouls out of the game and they still get the win and on the road no-less then you begin to realize just how good this team can be when they get the kink's worked out on offense and defenses.

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