LOUISVILLE — Most times, when a Kentucky Wildcat scores, that's good for the Bluegrass State.
Not Friday night, though, as UK recruit Marquis Teague hit a shot from the circle with nine-tenths of a second left to give Indiana a 105-103 victory in the annual boys' all-star game between the border states. A packed house watched the contest in Bellarmine University's steamy Knights Hall.
"I'd been missing the whole game, but I just wanted to come down and make a play," said Teague, who finished with 18 points.
The teams wrap up the annual series Saturday night at Indianapolis.
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Indiana, which leads the all-time series 84-42, won for the 23rd in 26 games. A win Saturday would give Indiana a sweep for the third year in a row and the sixth time in seven years.
Butler-bound Andrew Smeathers led Indiana scorers with 21 points. Nic Moore added 16, Branden Dawson 17 points and 11 rebounds. Mr. Basketball Cody Zeller, limited to 191/2 minutes because of foul trouble, had nine points and nine rebounds.
Kentucky, which had been missing its Mr. Basketball — Anthony Hickey — and George Fant for most of the week because of college class commitments, had both players give gutty efforts.
Hickey (Christian County/LSU) wound up with 19 points, eight assists and six steals.
Fant (Warren Central/Western Kentucky) had 18 points and five rebounds.
Ryan Taylor (Western/Louisville) added 17 points, seven rebounds and three blocks, while Remy Abell (Eastern/Indiana) had 12 points.
Indiana blew an 11-point first- half lead and went into intermission trailing 54-46.
Kentucky saw a 10-point lead evaporate in the second half, with Indiana using a zone defense to protect Zeller.
Mike Hackett, the Indiana coach from Munster, said the team practiced a zone "zero seconds. We just did it and it worked."
Indiana completed its comeback from a 10-point deficit to tie at 90, when Smeathers hit a three-pointer with 4:55 left. That started a 7-0 Indiana run.
Kentucky came back with consecutive threes by Treg Setty (Mason County/Southern Illinois) and Abell.
Back and forth it went, with ties at 98 and 100.
Smeathers nailed another three with 29.7 seconds left for a 103-100 Indiana lead.
"I want the ball in that situation because you have confidence you can make it," said Smeathers, who uncharacteristically gave a brief pose when the ball went through. "That was one of my favorite threes I've ever made."
Hickey responded with a three of his own with 16 seconds left.
"It was a big shot, but we also had some time left on the clock," Hickey said. "Marquis hit a good shot. Remy put up good defense on him, contesting. Big players make big shots at the end. He stepped up and made a big shot. That was the game."
After a timeout, Hickey was unable to get off a half-court shot before the buzzer sounded, and the ball hit hard off the backboard.
Indiana shot 31-for-44 from the free-throw line, which irked Kentucky coach Glen Drury of Anderson County. The Kentuckians shot 27-for-38.
"I guess we did foul some, but there was a heavy discrepancy in foul shots," Drury said.
"Our guys, what can you ask? ... They went out and demonstrated what Kentucky's pride is all about."
A report earlier in the day that some in Indiana want to consider ending the all-star game because of the lopsided results in recent years fueled the Kentuckians.
"That really fired us up," said Zach Price (Jeffersontown/Louisville). "I think we felt disrespected by that and we took it to heart."