The 10th seeded Commodores took a quick lead, and never looked back at the puzzled Kentucky Wildcats. Vanderbilt had a 16-point advantage at the half, and made 18 of their first 27 shots. After the halftime break, the ‘Dores continued their streak by making their first five shots of the second half. The ‘Cats could not match Vanderbilt’s intensity, despite clawing back with 10 straight points of their own and a thunderous dunk from Archie Goodwin. After the Goodwin dunk, the lead was only 11 and their was 12:37 left on the game clock. Plenty of time to make a move, that just didn’t happen. The ‘Cats went ice cold in the next 5:12 until Alex Poythress made a layup. The drought sealed the win for Vanderbilt, and maybe Kentucky’s fate.
Vanderbilt had 4 players score in double figures, lead by Dajuan Parker with 12. The ‘Dores shot 50% from the field, making 8 of 17 from the 3-point line. The stats are just the opposite for the ‘Cats. Kyle Wiltjer and Archie Goodwin were the only bright spots on offense, each scoring in double figures. The ‘Cats shot 34% from the field, 28% from the 3, and 8-16 from the free-throw line. Ryan Harrow may have had the worst of the bunch, only making 2-15 from the floor.
Because of Vanderbilt’s horrid RPI, the ‘Cats tournament hopes took a direct hit and may have sunk their battleship. Say what you will, but I’ve never seen a John Calipari team not mesh like this team has failed to do so. I question how much they really like being around each other. Jeff Goodman of CBS says Kentucky should not even accept an invitation to the NIT. At this point, I don’t know of a lot of people that wish to see this team on the floor again this year. You really feel for the players and the fans in this situation. Bridgestone Arena was Rupp Arena of the south last night, with tons of blue all over the building. Their may have been 500 Vandy fans, and the rest were die-hard Kentucky fans. Those fans were willing to spend the money, despite a sub-par regular season. A 64-48 loss to the ‘Dores is their reward. Despite how they played on the court, all the hard work the players have put in will just earn them a trip to a sub-par tournament. If you haven’t seen the video, and you wish to do so, take a look below at a tearful Ryan Harrow blaming the loss on him. His teammates obviously didn’t agree, and I don’t either.
Video Credit to the Courier Journal