Sports

Starters star in Cats' road victory

Kentucky's bench didn't contribute a single point, but it didn't have to when Eleia Roddy and Carly Morrow were on the floor most of the game.

The two Kentucky starters each recorded career highs of 19 points to help the Cats pick up their first Southeastern Conference road win at Alabama 67-57 on Thursday night.

"It was a tremendous performance because one thing that's hard to do is to get on the road, not play great and find a way to battle through and win," Coach Matthew Mitchell said. "We expected some people to come off the bench and give us some production and it just didn't happen tonight. It was just a tremendous victory for us."

Hanging on to a 50-48 lead with just under five minutes to go, Morrow went on a personal 5-0 run to give UK control of the game.

The Cats made 12 of 14 free throws in the final 2:51 to win it. Morrow, who hit a career-high four three-pointers, also grabbed six rebounds in the win.

Roddy and fellow post player Victoria Dunlap each recorded double-doubles in the win. Roddy, who had 19 points and 10 rebounds, leads the SEC with nine double-doubles.

Dunlap's 16 points and 12 rebounds gave her five double-doubles for the season. Most of her points came from the free-throw line, where she made eight of 10. It was the 12th time this season that the sophomore forward has finished in double figures.

Kentucky (12-6, 2-1) also got 11 points and six assists from sophomore point guard Amber Smith, who played 39 minutes.

Four other players played for the Cats, including Carly Ormerod, who contributed 22 minutes, but she didn't score.

The Cats, who have won seven of their last eight and two in a row, held the Crimson Tide to 33.3 percent shooting and 9.5 percent shooting (2-for-21) from three-point range.

Varisia Raffington led the Tide with 15 points. Tierney Jenkins added 13 points and 11 rebounds for Alabama (12-6, 0-3).

"I was concerned coming on the road to a place like this," Mitchell said. "I don't think we played particularly well in stretches, so to be able to come away with a win on a night like tonight is really terrific.

"The main thing is the 'W' and I tell the players they can't take these wins away from us. We're real, real happy to be leaving Tuscaloosa with a victory tonight."

For the sixth straight game, three or more Wildcats scored in double-digits, helping UK (12-6, 2-1 Southeastern Conference) to a 67-57 victory over Alabama (12-6, 0-3 SEC) Thursday night at Coleman Coliseum. It was the Wildcats' seventh win in their last eight games.

The Wildcats got a balanced effort both inside and outside. Four players — two forwards and two guards — scored in double figures to help UK pull out its first conference road win of the year.

"I'm absolutely thrilled to get this win tonight," UK Hoops Matthew Mitchell said. "I was concerned coming on the road. ... I didn't think we played particularly well in stretches so to be able to come away with a win on a night like tonight was terrific and something I'm very proud we were able to do."

Senior forward/center Eleia Roddy and sophomore guard Carly Morrow led the Wildcats with career nights. Both notched a career-high 19 points, but they had plenty of help from their supporting cast. Sophomore Victoria Dunlap finished with 16 points, and sophomore guard Amber Smith chipped in with 11 points to seal the game for the UK.

The Wildcats were outscored 28-14 inside the paint and struggled to keep the Crimson Tide off the offensive glass, but UK won Thursday night thanks to its interior play.

UK's duo of Roddy and Dunlap down low combined for 35 of the Wildcats' 67 points and both recorded double-digit rebound totals. Dunlap's game-high 12 boards and Roddy's 10 rebounds were good enough for a pair of double-doubles, the first time two UK players recorded double-doubles since Jan. 3 against Miami (Ohio).

With the Wildcats clicking on the inside, UK was able to stretch the Alabama defense late in the game.

"It opens (the offense) a lot," Dunlap. "If we're down there clicking, getting points and getting boards, it's hard for people to control the inside and control the outside."

With the Wildcats' inside game rolling, the outside opened up, particularly for Morrow. The sophomore guard from Chattanooga, Tenn., continued her deadly shooting from behind the arc by scoring three or more treys for the sixth consecutive game.

Morrow ended the game with four daggers from three-point land, but the biggest came with the game still in doubt. Hanging on to a 50-48 lead with just under five minutes to go, Morrow went on a personal 5-0 run, including a 3-pointer, to give UK control of the game.

The Tide tried to rally late in the game, but UK sunk its free throws and Dunlap grabbed some key rebounds down the stretch to finish off Alabama.

The Tide's ability to crash the offensive boards kept them close for most of the game — Alabama pulled down 19 offensive rebounds — but the Wildcats tightened late in the game thanks a to a halftime talk from their coach.

"That was one of the goals to make sure we sat on the boards and make sure they weren't getting as many offensive boards as they got (in the first half)," Dunlap said. "Coach told us to make sure we boxed out and make sure they wouldn't get as many boards as they had."

Results, schedule

Date Opponent Time/result

Nov. 5 x-KY. STATE W, 99-28

Nov. 9 x-BELLARMINE W, 72-69

Nov. 15 MICHIGAN L, 70-60

Nov. 17 CINCINNATI W, 58-55

Nov. 23 GEORGE WASHINGTON W, 67-48

Nov. 28 a-Yale W, 87-82

Nov. 29 a-Long Island W, 46-43

Dec. 2 at Xavier L, 67-40

Dec. 4 at Western Kentucky L, 66-57

Dec. 6 FURMAN W, 74-35

Dec. 12 EAST TENNESSEE ST. L, 59-50

Dec. 14 at Louisville L, 79-50

Dec. 19 ALABAMA A&M W, 65-45

Dec. 21 at Cal-Santa Barbara W, 69-58

Dec. 30 IUPUI W, 82-60

Jan. 1 NORTH CAROLINA A&T W, 72-63

Jan. 3 at Miami (Ohio) W, 80-55

Jan. 8 at Tennessee L, 69-64

Jan. 11 ARKANSAS W, 72-63

Jan. 15 at Alabama W, 67-57

Jan. 18 MISSISSIPPI ST. 4 p.m.

Jan. 25 LOUISIANA ST. 1 p.m.

Jan. 29 at Florida 7 p.m.

Feb. 1 at Mississippi 3 p.m.

Feb. 5 SOUTH CAROLINA 7 p.m.

Feb. 8 VANDERBILT 1 p.m.

Feb. 12 at Auburn 7 p.m.

Feb. 19 TENNESSEE 7 p.m.

Feb. 22 at Louisiana St. 3 p.m.

Feb. 26 GEORGIA 7 p.m.

March 1 at South Carolina 3 p.m.

x-exhibition; a-Long Island Turkey Classic at Brooklyn, N.Y.

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