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Janee Thompson had a team-best 15 points in UK's 91-62 win over Morehead State on Wednesday. (Britney Howard, UK Athletics) Janee Thompson had a team-best 15 points in UK's 91-62 win over Morehead State on Wednesday. (Britney Howard, UK Athletics)
By Connor Link, UK Athletics

Even though Kentucky was nine points away from scoring in triple figures Wednesday afternoon, no one player poured in more than 15 points individually.

Only four points separated the Wildcats' leading scorer, Janee Thompson, from its fourth leading scorer, Azia Bishop. In UK's 91-62 win over in-state foe Morehead State, cohesive teamwork was the key to victory.

"We don't just play five people," Thompson said. "Everybody is going to play, and that makes it that much easier for us when we get out on the floor."

Thompson, a 5-foot-7 point guard from Chicago, has accepted an increased leadership role through the first three games of her junior season.

"The position of point guard, it is a positional leadership role," said head coach Matthew Mitchell. "People are looking to you as a point guard to be a leader, and sometimes you get true leadership and sometimes you get positional leadership. (Thompson) is really truly leading and I am very excited about that."

Committing zero turnovers in Wednesday's victory in front of 5,923 fans in Memorial Coliseum, including 1,500 sixth graders there for "Class of 2021 Day," Thompson scored 15 points on perfect 4-for-4 shooting from the free-throw line, but received substantial help from the two remaining thirds of Kentucky's three-headed point guard assault. Senior Jennifer O'Neill recorded 14 points and six rebounds, while sophomore Makayla Epps stuffed the stat sheet with nine points, four rebounds and four assists off the bench.

"Jennifer has an excellent attitude right now," Mitchell said. "So our leadership is doing really great. Even Makayla Epps (has) a great attitude right now. I am happy with that. We need that."

"I think the three of us--myself, (O'Neill), and Epps--have a really good relationship," Thompson said. "(We) are really starting to understand what Coach Mitchell is looking for and what our team needs from us."

From all five positions on the floor, No. 9 Kentucky (3-0) completely dominated its opponent from the Ohio Valley Conference. The Wildcats' starting frontcourt of Bishop and sophomore Kyvin Goodin-Rogers pulled down 11 and nine rebounds, respectively. As a team, UK outrebounded the Eagles 55-35.

"We love going out there and playing hard, and getting rewarded for the hard work we have put in in practice," Thompson said. "We work extremely hard every day, and to be able to see that stuff come out when we play on the floor is great for us."

Thompson's former high school teammate, current sophomore guard Linnae Harper, contributed 13 points and 10 rebounds in 25 minutes off the UK bench. Along with Bishop, Harper was one of two Cats to log a double-double.  

"We aren't going to be the most talented team around, but our intangibles can be really high," said Mitchell. "If we can work together and the sum be greater than the parts, we can really do some things."

After three games over the course of six days, Kentucky has until Saturday to relax and reflect on the season's hot start. The Wildcats will travel to Mount Pleasant, Mich., for 2014-15's first road matchup with the Chippewas of Central Michigan.


Video: Champions Classic shootaround

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Video: Get hyped for Kentucky-Kansas

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Matthew Mitchell


Jennifer O'Neill and Makayla Epps



Air Force Senior Master Sergeant James A. Allegrezza was reunited with his wife and two children at Kentucky's game on Sunday. Allegrezza was born in Williamsport, Pa., and graduated from Woodford County High School in Versailles, Ky., in 1994. He enlisted in September 1995 as a Medical Services Apprentice.

Here's video of the reunion at Rupp Arena.


Video: Highlights from UK's win over Buffalo

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