UK Men's Basketball

NCAA runner-up gets Mega beaten by a team Kentucky blew out

Kentucky’s Keldon Johnson slammed home two of his 16 points against Mega Bemax in the Bahamas during an Aug. 11 exhibition game. Mega Bemax, a Serbian pro team, beat Michigan on Thursday.
Kentucky’s Keldon Johnson slammed home two of his 16 points against Mega Bemax in the Bahamas during an Aug. 11 exhibition game. Mega Bemax, a Serbian pro team, beat Michigan on Thursday. UK Athletics

Mega Bemax, the young Serbian professional team that lost in a blowout to Kentucky this month in the Bahamas, handed Michigan an 81-73 loss in Barcelona on Thursday as last season’s NCAA runner-up competed on a European exhibition tour.

The Wolverines lost standout Moe Wagner from last year’s team, but retained former UK player Charles Matthews and fellow starters Zavier Simpson and Isaiah Livers. Add to that one of Coach John Beilein’s best recruiting classes.

Against Bemax, however, the Wolverines got off to a rocky start and gave up some big runs. Michigan trailed by as much at 42-28, according to Twitter reports by The Athletic’s Brendon F. Quinn. They cut the lead to 57-55 in the fourth quarter before Bemax stretched it back out.

Against Kentucky, it was Bemax who never found its footing, trailing 29-12 against UK after one quarter of action. A 23-point third-quarter deficit ballooned to 36 at game’s end.

Bemax played Michigan with the same lineup it put on the court versus the Cats. Kostja Mushidi scored 19, Goga Bitadze, 16, and Adam Mokoka had 13 points against the Wolverines. The same group had 15, two and five points, respectively, against the Cats.

Kentucky is the preseason No. 1 according some prognosticators. Michigan ranks as a preseason No. 17, according to an ESPN analyst, and as a No. 21 team according to CBSSports.com.

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