- Saturday, December 3 1994 -
John Wooden Classic (at Anaheim, CA)
Kentucky - 81 (Head Coach: Rick Pitino) - [Ranked 3rd by AP]
UCLA - 82 (Head Coach: Jim Harrick) - [Ranked 5th by AP]
Halftime Score: Kentucky 38, UCLA 33
|Prior Game|||||Next Game|
|Ohio 79 - 74|||||Indiana 73 - 70|
Game Writeup - Courtesy of Dr. Jeffrey Neil Burch; Dr. J's UK Newsletter, Vol. 4 No. 23. (All Rights Reserved)
The One That Got Away:
The last time Kentucky played a basketball game on the West Coast was December of 1959. The Cats decided that after 35 years, they had better go again, and they may be sorry they did, as the UCLA Bruins managed to come from behind in winning 82-81 on last second free throws by J. R. Henderson.
UK looked to be the better team for much of the game, taking the early lead and seldom relinquishing it except for a few minutes in both halves. Tony Delk picked up 2 fouls within the 1st 2 minutes of the game, and was largely ineffective early. At one point, McCarty inbounded the ball by simply walking onto the court (he then pretended he hadn't caught the ball, walked back off the court, and inbounded properly the second time!). The Cats were up by 8 in the 1st half (at 38-30) and UCLA had a brief 1 point lead at 25-24. The Kentucky press bothered the Bruins as UK forced a number of turnovers, and at one point UCLA had more turnovers and fouls than field goals. The Cats made enough themselves, however, to keep it close. McCarty missed a slam, and Prickett broke up a 2 on 1 break (where he was the only 1 back for Kentucky). The Cats led 38-33 at the half.
Coach Pitino got his 1st technical in some time shortly after the start of the second half when he protested a traveling call against Rhodes (who was hit hard by Charles O'Bannon on Rhodes' way for a layup). Rhodes was shaken up and came out of the game (and he laid on the court while the technical fouls were shot). UCLA went on a 12-0 scoring run at the end of the 1st and beginning of the 2nd half, to take a 42-38 point lead briefly. Kentucky tied the game at 48 all a few minutes later, and maintained the lead almost to the end.
UK had a rare 5 point play in the second half, as Rhodes hit a 3 while Bailey fouled under the basket (UK got possession and Delk scored on a layup to put the Cats up 53-50). On UCLA's next possession, Edney started to fall near the midcourt line, and appeared to bounce himself off Tony Delk, who was whistled for pushing. Then Rhodes drew 2 quick fouls in succession to foul out Charles O'Bannon, who finished with 12 points.
The Cats led by as many as 10 points (with 10 minutes left in the game), and still held a 6 point lead with about 3.5 minutes left. UK had 4 key players with 4 fouls, and were less determined on defense. In the end, Kentucky was unable to halt the UCLA comeback due to 3 turnovers in the game's final 4 minutes: 1) Tony Delk simply handed the ball over to J. R. Henderson in the backcourt (on a bad bounce), 2) McCarty didn't catch a pass from Epps when neither was being pressured, and 3) Rhodes threw a pass to Mark Pope which bounced off Pope's knee, with 18 seconds remaining in the game and UK leading 81-80. Henderson was fouled as he tried to make the final shot, and he hit 2 free throws with 0.6 seconds remaining in the game. UK passed the ball in to Rhodes near midcourt, but Rhodes bobbled the ball and could not get off a shot as time expired.
George Zidek (#25) shoots over Mark Pope(#41)
Chris Harrison (#3)