- Tuesday, December 1 1998 -
Great Eight (at Chicago, IL)
Kentucky - 63 (Head Coach: Orlando Smith) - [Ranked 8th by AP]
Kansas - 45 (Head Coach: Roy Williams) - [Ranked 7th by AP]
Halftime Score: Kentucky 41, Kansas 22
|Prior Game|||||Next Game|
|UCLA 66 - 62|||||Miami 74 - 65|
Game Writeup - Courtesy of Dr. Jeffrey Neil Burch; Dr. J's UK Newsletter, Vol. 8 No. 21. (All Rights Reserved)
Demonstrating that their loss to Pitt in Puerto Rico was more a fluke than anything else, Kentucky manhandled a talented Kansas Jayhawk team 63-45 in the Great 8 in Chicago. UK was ranked #8 by AP, while Kansas was #6 during this contest. Heshimu Evans managed a double-double in scoring and rebounding for the Wildcats. This was the 3rd consecutive Great 8 victory for Kentucky.
With UK getting the opening tip, Prince missed a 3 and Bradford scored on a 12 footer for the Jayhawk's only 1 of 2 leads of the night at 2-0. Bradley scored inside, then Chenowith got a dunk for a 4-2 KU margin. After this it was all Kentucky, with Turner hitting on a 15 footer, a lob pass from Turner to Bradley for a layup, a pair of Turner FTs, a Prince 3, and an Evans 3 putback of a Smith miss to make it 13-4 before Kansas scored again (on a Gregory FT). Evans had another putback, then Smith scored on a drive to make it 17-5 Cats. Gregory hit 2 FTs to make it 17-7 at the 2nd TV timeout. Kansas mounted a bit of a comeback, closing to 21-12 on an outside shot by Chenowith and later making it 23-15 following an Earl bank shot. But Evans kicked in a 3, and Camara put back his own miss to expand the lead to 28-15 Kentucky. Prince made a 3, Chenowith made 1 FT (after a freethrow airball), then Smith hit a 3. After a hectic possession with plenty of UK rebounding, Padgett hit Bradley for a layup to make it 36-18. Kansas had missed their last 10 straight shots from the floor over a 5.5 minute period. Chenowith and Padgett exchanged short baskets, then Chenowith and Evans did the same, and finally Bradley ended the 1st half scoring with a FT to make it 41-22 at intermission. This was Kentucky's largest lead of the night. The Jayhawks had shot only 25% from the floor during the 1st half, had made only 1 3 pt shot, and had experienced 2 scoring droughts. The 1st was going 0-8 from the floor over 7.3 minutes, the second being an 0-10 run over 6 minutes. Despite KU outrebounded its opponents this year by more than 10 per game, UK held a 22-16 rebounding lead at intermission.
Kansas closed the gap a bit early in the 2nd half, but even so, after a Robertson 3 and a Boschee 3, it was still 44-31. Padgett made a FT, Turner scored on a drive, Pugh hit 2 FTs, then Camara scored inside to make it 49-33. Gregory hit a 3, then Turner made another great drive. Earl and Chenowith combined to make it 51-41 at the next TV timeout, and after a frantic series, Earl was fouled and made 1 FT to close the gap to its narrowest in the 2nd half at 51-42. But Prince hit an 18 footer to end a 4 minute Wildcat scoring drought, and Turner was fouled on a drive and made both FTs (in fact, it was late in the game before Turner missed anything) to put the Cats up 55-42 with around 8 minutes remaining in the game. Turner had 1 more FT later, and Bradley had a putback basket, to make it 58-42. Padgett began hesitating on his shots, and Boschee promptly stole the ball and made a 3, which turned out to be the last scoring by the Jayhawks. Turner made yet another superlative driving basket, and Smith added 2 FTs, and after a final Turner FT, UK's scoring was completed and a 63-45 victory was produced. Coaches Smith and Williams shook hands at midcourt before the final seconds had ticked away. The Jayhawks scored only 3 pts in the final 9 minutes of the contest.
The Wildcat victory snapped an 8 game winning streak by Kansas against Top 10 ranked opponents. The 45 Kansas pts were its lowest scoring production since a 54-45 loss to SW Louisiana in 1983. It was Roy Williams' worst loss at Kansas since a 19 pt loss to Indiana in 1994.
Wayne Turner (#5) shoots over KU's Jeff Boschee (#13)
Jules Camara (#40) tries to regain possession of the ball while defended by Kenny Gregory
Scott Padgett (#34) tries to get a shot off against Nick Bradford (#21)