- Wednesday, January 26 1994 -
South Carolina - 67 (Head Coach: Eddie Fogler) - [Unranked]
|Pete Van Elswyk||28||0||2||0||1||0||3||3||4||1||2||0||2||0|
Kentucky - 79 (Head Coach: Rick Pitino) - [Ranked 9th by AP]
Halftime Score: Kentucky 35, South Carolina 34
|Prior Game|||||Next Game|
|Mississippi State 86 - 70|||||Auburn 91 - 74|
Game Writeup - Courtesy of Dr. Jeffrey Neil Burch; Dr. J's UK Newsletter, Vol. 3 No. 21. (All Rights Reserved)
Wildcats Gouge a Gang of Gamely Gamecocks:
It wasn't pretty, and it wasn't particularly efficient, but Kentucky somehow managed to subdue a team as poor as USC by the final score of 79-67.
The Gamecocks arrived in Lexington late in the afternoon of game day due to travel problems related to their aircraft. They ended up staying overnight in Louisville and driving over to Lexington the following day.
There were rumors that USC would try extreme slowdown tactics to stay with the Cats, but those rumors proved unfounded when the first Gamecock shot was a rapid 3 which hit. The lead bounced between the two schools for a while until UK pulled ahead 10-8, then 14-10. Kentucky played more man-to-man defense in this contest than they had in a while, owing to a desire to force USC to move with the ball and not burn the clock. The Gamecocks tied the game at 17 on a Matthews 3 pointer, and UK looked sloppy for a while (a bit impatient for their shots and careless with ball handling). Jeff Brassow hit a 3 pointer, the first of several that night, to put UK up 22-19. Brassow had the hot hand in this contest, sparking his team and hitting critical shots to prevent USC rallies from taking hold. He appeared fully recovered from his recent broken toenail difficulties.
South Carolina remained close for most of the second half, tying the game again at 24-24. UK never led by more than 4 and USC never by more than 3 in the first half. The Wildcats had a flurry of missed shots off of beautiful assists, but finally returned to the scoring column when a Brassow shot was goaltended. USC even took a brief 32-31 lead before the Cats settled into a 35-34 halftime lead with McCarty scoring the Cats' last two baskets. There had been 8 lead changes in the first half, and UK had only committed 4 fouls - a rarity.
Jeff Brassow had such a great first half that he started the second half, which began with a USC layup by Watson, but that was the last lead the Gamecocks were to experience that night. Brassow led a UK rally which ballooned to 43-36 before USC knew what hit them. UK forced several turnovers and turned the defensive pressure up a notch on an 8-0 run. Andre Riddick got his 3rd foul early in the half, and Martinez stepped in. Jared Prickett controlled the boards - he ended up with 17 rebounds for the night (and had his hands on several other caroms but couldn't quite control them). Tony Delk also picked up his 3rd foul early, forcing play of Anthony Epps, who like Martinez did a fine job in playing longer than they were accustomed to do.
Poor Travis Ford did not have a good game in scoring, and he made a few turnovers, but according to post-game reports, Travis was bothered by a similar toe injury to Jeff Brassow's. He scored only a single 3 pointer, which turned out to be his 999th point as a Kentucky Wildcat. His next point enables him to become the 41st member of Kentucky's 1000 Point Club.
Kentucky's lead grew to 10 points at 53-43, and the only atrocious non- call of the game took place. USC's Jiri Formanek hit Jeff Brassow in the nose, but no call was made, and a few seconds later Brassow was himself called for a foul against Matthews. Jeff had to leave the game for a while to stop the blood flow.
An old-fashioned 3 point play by Rhodes and a free throw by Prickett enlarged the UK lead to 57-45, and later a Delk 3, a Rhodes layup, and a Brassow 3 put the lead at 65-50 with about 10 minutes left. UK's largest lead was 17 points at 69-52 following a Riddick spin move basket. The Cats led by 15 with about 2 minutes left, but sloppy play and some USC scoring cut the final margin down to 12.
Jeff Brassow tied his career high with 25 points. Jared Prickett had a double double, scoring 10 points and grabbing 17 rebounds.
Travis Ford (#5) is blocked by South Carolina's Durrant Williams