Men’s Basketball Postgame Notes
Vanderbilt at Kentucky, Rupp Arena, Lexington, Ky.
Feb. 28, 2017 Attendance: 24,036
Final Score: No. 9/9 Kentucky 73, Vanderbilt 67
Team Records and Series Notes
Kentucky has won seven in a row and is 25-5 overall.
UK is 15-2 in the Southeastern Conference and clinches a tie for its 48th regular-season league championship with one game to play. It is UK’s fifth crown in eight seasons under John Calipari.
Vanderbilt ended a four-game winning streak and is 16-14 overall, 9-8 in league play.
Kentucky leads the series 143-47, including 80-14 in Lexington.
Next for the Wildcats: UK finishes the regular season Saturday at Texas A&M. Game time is noon ET (11 am CST in College Station). The game will be televised by CBS.
In the First Half
Kentucky’s starting lineup featured seniors Mychal Mulder, Dominique Hawkins and Derek Willis, along with Isaiah Briscoe and Bam Adebayo.
Vanderbilt jumped out to a 7-0 lead.
De’Aaron Fox got a 3-point shot early in the game, extending UK’s streak of 1,004 consecutive games with a triple.
Ahead 11-6, Vanderbilt utilized a 14-0 run for a 25-6 lead with 8:03 remaining in the half.
Kentucky responded with a 9-0 spurt to get back within 25-15.
UK continued to edge closer, narrowing Vanderbilt’s lead to 30-24 at halftime. It is the fewest points UK scored in any half this season.
In the Second Half
Vanderbilt got hot again and built a 47-34 lead.
UK had an 8-0 run to make it 47-42 but VU’s Jeff Roberson hit a 3-pointer as the shot clock expired to blunt the momentum.
Down 53-44, UK rallied again with a 10-1 run to tie the game at 54.
UK earned its first lead of the game, 59-57, when Willis hit a 3-pointer with 4:46 remaining.
Tied at 62, Fox made a free-throw line jumper, Briscoe followed with a tip-in and Monk swished a 3-pointer to give the Wildcats a 69-62 lead.
VU kept fighting, with a pair of foul shots and a 3-pointer by Luke Kornet to get back to 69-67.
UK held on with Monk sinking four straight foul shots to preserve the win.
Kentucky’s rally from 19 points down is the biggest comeback win in the Calipari era and the biggest since 1994.
On March 2, 1994, UK trailed Florida 33-14 with 7:00 remaining in the first half, then rallied to win 80-77.
The previous largest deficit in the Calipari era was 18 points vs. Miami (Ohio), 36-18, with 7:04 left in the first half on Nov. 16, 2009. UK stormed back to win 72-70. It marked just the second game in Calipari’s UK coaching tenure.
Kentucky held Vanderbilt to 67 points.
UK is 16-0 this season when limiting the opponent to 72 or fewer points.
Kentucky shot 43.6 percent from the field. UK is 24-1 this season when shooting at least 42 percent.
Kentucky won the rebounding battle for the seventh straight game – coinciding with the seven-game win streak – 33-28.
UK has outrebounded opponents by 10.9 boards per game during the current seven-game win streak.
UK is 21-2 this season when outrebounding the opponent.
In the decisive second half, UK won turnovers 10-2 and capitalized by winning points off turnovers 17-0.
UK won bench points 40-8, featuring 27 points from Monk and 13 by Fox.
Kentucky honored seniors Dominique Hawkins, Mychal Mulder and Derek Willis before the game.
Calipari has a 687-192 (.782) on-court record, including a 242-52 (.823) mark at UK.
Kentucky has an all-time mark of 561-66 (.895) in Rupp Arena.
UK is 134-6 (.957) at Rupp Arena under John Calipari.
UK finished the season 14-2 at home, including 8-0 in the SEC.
Freshman Malik Monk tallied 27 points, 20 of which came in the decisive second half.
This was Monk’s 17th 20-point game of the season.
He continued his streak of double-figure scoring in every game this season.
Over the last two second halves (Florida and Vanderbilt), Monk has totaled 50 points.
Freshman Bam Adebayo had 16 points and six rebounds.
He is averaging 11.2 rebounds over the last five games.
Freshman De’Aaron Fox returned after a one-game injury absence. He scored 13 points and added four rebounds.
Sophomore Isaiah Briscoe had seven points and once again stalked the backboards with seven rebounds. He has averaged 7.6 caroms over the last 11 games.
Briscoe also had a superb floor game, six assists and no turnovers.
Senior Derek Willis made only one basket, but it was a big one – his 3-pointer with 4:46 gave UK its first lead of the game.
He claimed eight rebounds, all on the defensive end, and blocked three shots.
Senior Mychal Mulder made his second straight start, making 2 of 3 shots for five points.