Auburn Too Much for UK Hoops
Senior Auburn guard Natasha Brackett scored a game-high 20 points and Kentucky shot just 30.5 percent (18-of-59) from the field as the Tigers defeated the Wildcats 65-50 Sunday in Beard-Eaves Memorial Coliseum. Freshman guard Samantha Mahoney led the Cats for the second consecutive game with a team-high 13 points. Mahoney has scored in double figures in five of the last six games.
Freshman guard Chante’ Bowman added nine points and a team-high nine rebounds for the Wildcats (14-11, 3-7 Southeastern Conference). Junior forward/center Jennifer Humphrey and senior guard Danyelle Payne each chipped in eight. Sophomore point guard Angela Phillips charted a career-high six rebounds in the victory. Kentucky, which dropped its third consecutive game, was tough on the boards, out-rebounding Auburn 44-37.
Auburn (13-10, 4-6 SEC) shot 42.9 percent (24-of-56) from the field and 66.7 percent (14-of-21) from the free-throw line. The Tigers have won six consecutive games against the Wildcats, who made only 20 percent (3-of-15) of their shots from three-point range. UK committed 15 turnovers, resulting in 17 Auburn points. Louise Emeagi charted 15 points and Alexis Ogubie added 11, as three Tigers scored in double figures.
The Wildcats opened the second-half with a crafty lay-up by Mahoney to cut the Auburn advantage to three, 27-24, with 18:35 left in the game, but from there the Tigers continued to build on their lead, pushing it out to six, 37-31 at the 11:54 mark. Auburn kept adding to its advantage and went ahead by 12 (47-35) with 8:12 remaining on a free-throw by Ogubie. A three-pointer by Taneshia Thompson gave the Tigers what was then their largest lead of the game at 15 (55-40) with just under four minutes left.
Auburn took a 27-22 advantage into the locker room at halftime after leading for much of the first period. Though the Tigers shot only 35.7 percent (10-of-28) in the first period, the Wildcats committed 10 turnovers resulting in 11 Auburn points. The Cats shot a mere 23.3 percent (7-for-30) from the field in the opening stanza, but out-rebounded the Tigers 30-16.
UK broke out to an early 7-2 lead at the 16:33 mark of the first half, but the Tigers put together a 12-3 run to pull ahead 14-10 on a three-pointer by Emeagi with 10:03 remaining in the period. The Cats twice came within one point of the Tigers, but Auburn closed out the half on a 7-3 run to distance itself.
Kentucky returns to action Thursday as it travels to Baton Rouge, La., for a match-up with the top-ranked LSU Lady Tigers. Tip off is set for 8 p.m. EST and the game will be carried live on WLXG 1300 AM with Chris Cross. Live stats will also be available on ukathletics.com. The Cats will then return home to face Mississippi State on Sunday, Feb. 20, in Memorial Coliseum. Tip off is set for 3 p.m. and the game will be televised by Fox Sports Net South.