All-Star basketball: Kentucky girls rout Indiana 75-47 with shut-down defense

jsmith3@herald-leader.comJune 8, 2012 

LOUISVILLE — It's not often that defense even plays a bit part in an All-Star game.

But in the first game of the Kentucky-Indiana girls' weekend series, defense was the star.

In its 75-47 victory over the Hoosiers in Freedom Hall on Friday night, Kentucky held Indiana to its second-lowest point total in series history and did it by the second-largest margin.

"There have been a lot of good Kentucky teams to come through here and to beat them by the second- biggest margin is saying a lot," Kentucky Miss Basketball Sydney Moss said.

The Florida signee led all scorers with 14 points and 11 rebounds for Kentucky, which will attempt to sweep the Hoosiers for only the second time since 1992.

The last time the Kentucky brooms came out was in 2008 when it had its largest margin of victory (39 points) ever in the series.

"It's a thrill to beat them like this," Kentucky Coach Stacy Pendleton said. "To take them out of their game plan and hold them to 35 percent shooting and 47 points in a 40-minute game is doing something. We hope we can replicate that tomorrow."

It took a while for Kentucky to find its shooting touch, missing its first 10 shots and falling behind 6-2.

Kentucky didn't get its first field goal until Marion County's Bre Elder drove for a layup off a steal nearly five minutes in.

But once the shots started to fall, they fell in a hurry, with the team from the Bluegrass grabbing a 27-18 lead midway through the first half.

The lead ballooned to as many as 15 points in the first half as Kentucky held Indiana without a point for more than six minutes.

"We knew our defense would come to work for us and it did," said Pendleton, whose team held Indiana to its lowest scoring output since the Hoosiers had 41 points in 1982.

By halftime, Kentucky had a 39-27 lead and had forced 16 turnovers.

Kentucky scored the first nine points of the second half to stretch its lead to 48-27.

"Just about everything we could've done wrong, we did," said Indiana Coach Scott Kreiger, whose team shot 25.9 percent in the second half. "Our execution was simply not good enough."

Indiana had its own 9-0 run midway through the second half, but it was too little too late for the Hoosiers, who were led by Akilah Sims and Rachael Gregory with 12 points apiece.

Auburn signee Nariah Taylor, a 6-foot-5 center, had five points. Indiana Miss Basketball Jessica Rupright, a Miami (Ohio) signee, scored two points.

"It was an ugly game," Pendleton said. "But I'd rather win an ugly game than lose a pretty one."

Jennifer Smith: (859) 231-3241.Twitter: @jenheraldleader.

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