No. 15 Kentucky Faces First Road Test at Colorado
LEXINGTON, Ky. – After a dominating performance Thursday against New Hampshire, the No. 15 University of Kentucky women’s basketball team faces its first road test of the 2016-17 season Saturday when it travels to play Colorado at 9 p.m. ET inside the Coors Event Center in Boulder, Colorado.
The game will be streamed online at Pac12.com with Cory Lopez and Carol Callan on the call. Now in his 12th season, Neil Price will have the call on the UK Sports Network. Fans in Lexington can hear Price’s call of the game Saturday on WLAP 630AM. Live stats and free audio will be available online at ukathletics.com.
Kentucky moved to 3-0 on the season with a 92-43 victory over New Hampshire on Thursday afternoon inside Memorial Coliseum. The Wildcats had a balanced performance in the game as six UK players were in double figures paced by junior Makenzie Cann, who had a career-high 20 points with four assists and five rebounds. Senior Evelyn Akhator had another double-double with 17 points and 11 rebounds, while Alyssa Rice, Maci Morris, Makayla Epps and Jessica Hardin each had 10 or more points.
Offensively, Kentucky scored a season-best 92 points and hit 52.2% from the field, including 48% from long distance. Kentucky had 22 assists in the game, the most in a game since November of last season and scored 38 points in the paint with 22 points off turnovers. UK only had five turnovers in the game, which was its fewest since March of 2015 against Dayton.
Defensively, the Wildcats limited New Hampshire to 24.2% from the field, including 28.6% from 3. UNH scored only 20 points in the first half, including only nine points in the first and third quarters. UNH scored only 43 points in the game, which was a season low for a Kentucky opponent.
In its first three games, Kentucky is averaging 81.3 points per game, hitting at a .466 clip from the field, including .403 from 3 and .719 from the free throw line. The Wildcats are limiting opponents to just 51.7 points per game, including 30.2% from the field and 28.6% from 3. Akhator paces UK by averaging 21.0 points and 11.3 rebounds per game, while Epps is averaging 17.0 points per game with a team-best 16 assists. Cann is averaging 11.7 points and 5.3 rebounds per game.
Colorado enters Saturday's game with a 2-0 record after defeating Northern Colorado and Air Force to start the season. The Buffaloes are averaging 89.0 points per game this season, hitting 48.9% from the field, including 37.1% from 3. Colorado started the season with an 83-62 win at Northern Colorado before a 95-68 win against Air Force in its home opener.
Sophomore point guard Kennedy Leonard leads the Buffaloes this season, averaging 23.0 points per game with a team-high 17 assists and seven steals. Sophomore guard Alexis Robinson is averaging 19.5 points per game with nine assists and six steals, while senior forward Haley Smith is averaging 10 points per game with 5.5 rebounds per game and a team-best three blocks.
Colorado is in its first season under head coach JR Payne. Last season, Colorado went 7-23 (2-16 Pac-12), returning nine letterwinners from last year's squad, including four starters.
Kentucky faced Colorado for the first time in program history last year on Nov. 22 inside Memorial Coliseum, posting an 86-61 victory over the Buffaloes. Five Wildcats scored in double-figures in the game, with Morris earning 13 points and three assists, while Akhator had 10 points and nine rebounds and Taylor Murray had 10 points and five assists. The Wildcats had 24 assists in the game and forced Colorado into 21 turnovers, scoring 22 points off those turnovers. UK had 38 points in the paint and 12 second-chance points.
For more information on the Kentucky women’s basketball team, visit UKathletics.com or follow @KentuckyWBB on Twitter, Instagram and Snapchat, or Kentucky Women’s Basketball on Facebook.