How Kentucky won: quarter by quarter

September 8, 2012 

  • Tennessee at Kentucky

    When: 7 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 30

    TV: ESPNU

    Records: Kentucky 2-9 (0-7 SEC); Tennessee 4-7 (1-6)

First quarter

Summary: UK's defense started with a three-and-out, something it never forced Teddy Bridgewater to do last week. UK reached the Kent State 34, but Morgan Newton lost 4 yards on 4th-and-2 out of the Wildcat formation. Maxwell Smith and La'Rod King hooked up, and UK was threatening again but Craig McIntosh missed a 45-yard field goal. Dri Archer popped UK for a 47-yard TD run and Kent led 7-0.

Thumbs up: For the second straight week, Aaron Boyd (five catches in the quarter) came up big.

Thumbs down: In its first five rushes, UK lost 9 yards.

Second quarter

Summary: UK tied it with a 75-yard drive capped by a 14-yard TD catch by Boyd. Kent missed a 50-yard field goal. On the next play, Raymond Sanders went 67 yards for a TD and UK had its first lead of the year. Kent missed a 31-yard field goal. A terrific Boyd catch and a 26-yard screen to Jonathan George took UK 50 yards in 47 seconds to a McIntosh field goal.

Thumbs up: Down 7-0 and a season perhaps on the brink, UK responded.

Thumbs down: Kent State rushed for 131 yards in the first half.

Third quarter

Summary: Kent gashed UK by opening the half with a 9-play, 75-yard drive. Smith answered, going 6-for-7 for 70 yards and UK led 24-14. Martavius Neloms' jarring hit caused a fumble but UK could not score from inside the Kent 1. However, Archer tripped in the end zone and UK had a safety. George ripped off a 38-yard TD run and it was 33-14.

Thumbs up: Sure it was a MAC team, but Smith looks like he could be an elite-level SEC QB.

Thumbs down: With a chance to all but seal it, UK turned it over on downs inside the 1.

Fourth quarter

Summary: Smith found King on a fade pattern for an 11-yard TD and UK was up 40-14 moments into the quarter. Freshman DeMarcus Sweat showed the electricity the UK staff has been talking about, taking his first college catch and exploding for a 56-yard TD. By then, the crowd of 48,346 was heading home. Freshman QB Jason Whitlow mopped up late.

Thumbs up: Kudos to Boyd (11 catches). He had six in three previous years.

Thumbs down: The defense was better but is still a work in progress.

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