- Saturday, January 29 1921 -
Auburn - 25 (Head Coach: Mike Donahue)
Kentucky - 40 (Head Coach: George C. Buchheit) - [Final Rank ]
|Cincinnati 26 - 19
|Centre College 27 - 29
Wildcats Come From Behind to Defeat Auburn Five in Sensational Game
Teamwork of Kentucky Quintet is Too Hot for Alabama Basketeers
The Wildcats of the University of Kentucky outfought the basketball teams of Auburn Saturday night at the University gymnasium in one of the most thrilling games the Wildcats cage has ever seen. Auburn outlucked the Kentucky five during the first half of the contest and at the end of a slow 20 minutes of play had the big side of a 14 to 10 score. But during the last half the 'Cats staged a comeback that was never stopped by anything but the referee's whistle and at the end of the game the score was 40 to 25 in favor of Kentucky.
The affair was really two games. It was two plays, entirely different, except that they were staged by the same cast. The first 20 minutes, the contest was hinged on the accuracy in goal shooting of the opposing fives, and on the individual ability and initiative of the players. The visiting five had the advantage of two remarkable long distance goal shooters that sailed in goal after goal from nearly halfway down the court, and one of the best guards that has been seen on the Kentucky floor this season.
Tables Suddenly Turned
During the last half it was the smooth, swift and accurate teamwork of the local aggregation that tore down a lead of four points when the score stood at 20 to 16 in favor of the visitors, and held the Auburn quintet absolutely without a goal until the score had turned to 36 to 20 in favor of the Wildcats.
"Bill" King and "Bobby" Lavin, with all their remarkable passing and speed and aggressiveness throughout the contest, had to divide honors with the less sensational but none the less effective Ridgeway at guard and Atkins at center. Hayden, captain of the feline squad, did little more than give signals during the first half of the game, and engaged in no strenuous exercise at all until the second period started. After that, the whole Wildcat tribe got to working together, and while the lone roster for the visiting team sat on the sidelines and entreated his teammates to "watch that passwork" and "hold that lead while you got it," the Kentucky team got down to business and it was impossible to find any one man who stood out as a better player than anyone else.
The Auburn five had the advantage of weight and height all the way around, and this. coupled with the superior goal-shooting work of the two visiting forwards threatened to defeat the undefeated university quintet. Barks, forward and captain of the Auburn five, and Hahn, forward, pulled a line of goal shooting feats that would have made the Sphinx gasp. Time after time in the first half and for the first few minutes n the second, whenever the Wildcats drew up close behind on the scoreboard, one of these two men would stop somewhere near the middle o the court and drop the sphere into the iron hoop with perfect accuracy. Jim Wade, standing guard for the visitors, is probably the best guard that has visited the Wildcat gym this year. He defended his goal with a sagacity and aggressiveness that knocked many a point off the Kentucky side of the scorecard.
Visitors Take Lead
Kentucky took the lead in the first minute of play when "Bill" King tossed a peach of a basket before anybody had a chance to stop him. The visitors launched their aerial attack immediately and soon had the score at 6 to 2 in their favor. After that the visitors did not allow the Wildcats closer than four points to them up until the first two or three minutes of the second half were gone. Each time the 'Cats would ring in a goal one of the Auburn forwards would call a halt, and while everybody held their mouths open, would stand in the middle of the court and sail in as pretty field goal as ever was made.
Each team used only six players during the whole contest. During the last few minutes of the first half Coach Buchheit sent in Freddie Fest for Atkins, who had been showing up poorly, but when the second period started there was Atkins again under the goal and playing a better game. Lasker was the Auburn sub.
The second half started off with a rush and a smashing offensive by the Wildcats, but for the first few minutes it looked as if the offensive would do no good against the sturdy Alabamans. Then with the score 16 to 20 in favor of Auburn, "Bill" King got on the end of a long maneuver and tossed in a neat field goal. It seemed as if the packed galleries had been waiting all night for that moment, and when the sphere rolled through the iron ring a roar went up that made the old gymnasium shiver.
Less than ten seconds later Hayden had slapped in another, tying the score. After that every yell was a victory song for the Wildcats, and the Auburn team was soon so far behind it became discouraged and went to pieces. The thorough coaching and the fighting spirit of the Wildcats had defeated the brawn and high individual ability of the Auburn five.
The Wildcats' game was the same one that has carried them victoriously through five contest previous to this - the three-man offense. The wisdom of Coach George Buchheit's teaching the local team to keep one man under each goal and three on the floor has been clearly demonstrated once more.
Auburn will play the unbeaten Centre College quintet at Danville next Monday night. Kentucky's next game will also be with the Colonels at Danville on February 8.