By KENT BROWN
With 5:47 left in the first half, Kentucky led Tennessee 34-13 and looked on its way to an easy win. By halftime, the Cats’ lead was just six points and the Vols had all the momentum going into the second half.
Well, the Cats committed seven fouls, including a shooting foul by Alex Poythress, a foul on Marcus Lee on a made layup, a shooting foul by Isaiah Briscoe, a shooting foul by Lee, a shooting foul by Derek Willis and two fouls by Skal Labissiere in the final 39 seconds of the half.
The Vols converted those fouls into 13 points. They also hit two 3-pointers and made two layups, giving them 23 points in a little over five minutes.
Kentucky, meanwhile, went almost five minutes without a field goal before finally getting a layup by Tyler Ulis with 48 seconds left in the half.
Dominique Hawkins missed a layup, Labissiere committed a turnover, Willis missed a 3, Briscoe missed a layup, Willis missed a 14-footer, Jamal Murray committed a turnover, Ulis had a 9-footer blocked, Murray missed a 14-footer and Willis had a 3-pointer blocked.
Ulis scored six of UK’s final eight points of the half, with two free throws by Murray being the only other scoring.
All of this adds up to a 23-8 run by Tennessee to close the half.
That’s losing basketball, as Coach Cal would say.