- Thursday, January 25 1923 -
Alabama - 45 (Head Coach: Charlie Bernier)
Kentucky - 35 (Head Coach: George C. Buchheit)
|A. T. Rice||2||0||0||4|
Halftime Score: Alabama 18, Kentucky 16
|Prior Game|||||Next Game|
|Tenn-Chattanooga 25 - 18|||||Centre College 14 - 21|
Game Writeup - by Phil McCann, Lexington Herald
Alabama Wins from Kentucky
BRILLIANT WORK FEATURE
The Crimson tide was too high. Height, weight, a well organized passing attack and a five man defense proved too much for the University of Kentucky basketball quintet last night at the university gymnasium and the University of Alabama Crimson Tide swept before it the 'Cats with a 45 to 35 victory.
Before one of the largest crowds that ever witnessed a basketball game at the Wildcats' court, Alabama and Kentucky battled for 40 minutes in one of the hardest fought games seen here in many years. The Blue and White could not break with consistency through the five man defense, which proved to be almost impregnable, and when the Crimsons once came in possession of the ball, their perfect passing attack and accurate goal tossing put the 'Cats completely at sea.
Several minutes after the start of the game, Carter, the Alabama center, made a brilliant dribble down the floor and tossed a crip shot for the first marker. After the throwup he dropped the ball from midfloor for the second basket, and the Crimsons' playing started like clockwork.
Had it not been for the unsportsman like tactics shown by the crowd, Alabama's score might have been five points less, for Referee Boyer allowed the Crimsons five free shots, which were good for as many points. Referee Boyer explained to the spectators that the rule book stated that for any unsportsmanlike spirit shown by the spectators the home team shall be penalized. This handicapped the Kittens in their game with Cumberland and might have proven disastrous had the visiting team been a stronger contender.
With the score 8 to 0 in favor of Alabama, and the Cats unable to break through the Crimson defense, Rice made a perfect shot from midfloor for Kentucky's first marker. This score put new life in the Cats and they opened up a well organized attack for the first time during the game, and a a few seconds before the first half ended the score stood 16 all, but Burnham was penalized for holding, and when the whistle blew the Crimsons were leading by a two point margin, the result of the two free throws.
Kentucky came back strong in the second period and after Alabama dropped in two markers, Riefkin, Wilkinson and Rice dropped in a basket each, which gave the 'Cats a two point advantage which was the only time the Blue and White was in the lead. The teams battled hard for five minutes, but the Crimsons again organized their attack and went out in front never to be headed.
Alabama displayed some of the best playing ever seen on the university floor, but their height and weight proved their real advantage. Kentucky's teamwork was brilliant at flashes but it was just spasmodic and could not stand up under the grueling grind necessary to cope with their opponents.
McCauley, the Alabama forward, found the basket with ease, and his brilliant shots were largely responsible for the Crimson tallies. Stabler aided his companion in every play and shared honors with Carter, who dropped the basket from many difficult angles. Probst, although standing over Riefkin, like a mountain over a mole hill could not keep up with the diminutive forward, who dropped eight baskets for Kentucky, in addition to five fouls.
It was largely the scintillating work of Rice that kept Kentucky in the running. The Paris boy was never better and was in every play, regardless of his injured knee, which showed that it was slowing his progress.
Although not displaying the speedy work which he showed in the Chattanooga game, Freddy Fest displayed wonderful work and was handicapped by having as his opponent one of the best centers in the South.
From present indications, the Crimsons will be the team that the winner in the tournament at Atlanta will have to beat.
During the last few minutes of play, both teams showed the effects of the hard playing and were tiring badly when the final whistle blew.