UK Takes Battle of Power Programs - Cincinnati News, FOX19-WXIX TV

UK Takes Battle of Power Programs

LEXINGTON, Ky. (AP) - DeAndre Liggins scored a career-high 19

points, Brandon Knight added 18 points and six rebounds and No. 17

Kentucky bulled its way past Indiana, 81-62, on Saturday.

Josh Harrellson added 14 points and 12 rebounds for the Wildcats

(7-2), who continued their dominance in the once-heated rivalry by

shutting down the Hoosiers in the second half.

Indiana (7-2) managed just one field goal in the final 9 minutes

as Kentucky closed with a 25-5 burst after the Hoosiers had taken a

57-56 lead.

Christian Watford led Indiana with 19 points and nine rebounds

but the Hoosiers fell to their border rivals for the 14th time in

the last 17 meetings.

Indiana made the Wildcats work for it in a rugged game that

featured 47 fouls, a number of which sent bodies tumbling to the

ground.

The Hoosiers game plan was simple: try to outmuscle the quicker,

more inexperienced Wildcats. It worked for awhile. Kentucky

freshman Terrence Jones couldn't stay out of foul trouble and

neither could Knight.

Both players sat for long stretches in the first half, and Jones

never got on track. He finished with 10 points and eight rebounds

on 3-of-11 shooting and was hardly the dominant force he was in a

win over No. 23 Notre Dame on Wednesday.

Yet Kentucky survived, however, behind the spirited play of

Harrellson and Liggins. The holdovers from the Billy Gillispie era

have developed into solid role players under John Calipari, and

both made the "winning plays" the coach covets.

Indiana looked to have a chance to win in Lexington for the

first time since 1989 when Watford drilled a 3-pointer to give the

Hoosiers a 57-56 lead with 9:42 to go.

Liggins put Kentucky back in front with a 3-pointer two

possessions later then, after two free throws by Knight, converted

a difficult lay-up in traffic while drawing the foul. He hit the

extra shot to put Kentucky up 64-57 and the Wildcats slowly began

pulling away as the Hoosiers unraveled.

Jones hit two free throws, Harrellson put back a miss and by the

time Knight drilled a 3-pointer from the corner the Wildcats led

71-60 with 2:52 remaining.

It was more than enough to hold off Indiana. The Hoosiers' only

basket over the final minutes came on a layup by Jeremiah Rivers

with 38 seconds remaining.

Kentucky's win was its third straight in the series. All of the

wins have come by at least 17 points.

Calipari joked on Friday Kentucky should consider canceling the

series considering the way Indiana coach Tom Crean is breathing

life back into the Hoosiers following the NCAA-sanction riddled

tenure of predecessor Kelvin Sampson.

The Hoosiers are certainly on the right track, but can't quite

match Kentucky's talent level, at least not yet.

The Wildcats shot just 36 percent from the floor but overcame it

by dominating the paint and making free throws. Kentucky

outrebounded Indiana 45-33 and made 31 of 44 at the foul line.

The Wildcats led just 32-31 at the half as the Hoosiers stuck

around when Jones and Knight spent the last 6:40 of the period on

the bench with two fouls apiece.

Harrellson and Darius Miller attempted to pick up the offensive

slack, but Kentucky looked lost at times on the defensive end of

the floor. The Hoosiers finished the half on a 10-4 burst fueled by

four baskets right at the rim, the last a nifty layup by Will

Sheehey just before the buzzer that pulled Indiana within a point

at the break.

 

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