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Bob Dixon

Agency Manager


Middlesboro, KY 40965


Go Big Blue!

Quickley Shines Against Gators as UK Wins 65-59

By Jamie H. Vaught


With former Cat and current NBA standout John Wall, who performed the"Y" cheer in the second half, watching from his press table seat, Kentucky won its sixth straight game in defeating a very respectable Florida team 65-59 Saturday night before a season-high Rupp Arena crowd of 20,489.

The win improved UK's overall mark to 22-5 (12-2 SEC) while UF dropped to 17-10 overall (9-5 SEC).

The No. 10 Wildcats remain in first place in the SEC with a two-game lead over Auburn and LSU. Both clubs will face each other again on Saturday, March 7 in Gainesville, to conclude the regular season.

Kentucky guard Immanuel Quickley shoots against the Gators Saturday night. (UK Athletics Photo by Chet White)

The star of the game was sophomore Immanuel Quickley, who hit 4 of 6 three-pointers in the second half to finish with his career-high 26 points.

“He was fantastic," Florida coach Mike White said of Quickley. "He was the best player on the floor. I thought he did a great job finding space, searching. They did a good job finding him. Hit huge shots and complimented that with terrific defense on the perimeter. I thought collectively they all guarded. Their perimeter players in particular defended the three at a high rate and really did a good job, I think, led by him on (sophomore guard) Noah Locke (who had zero points in 24 minutes).”

Entering Saturday's game, Locke was averaging nearly 11 points a game this season. Last year, Locke set Florida's freshman record 81 made 3-pointers.

UK's Nick Richards, who added nine points and grabbed six rebounds, said Quickley "played amazing tonight. He made every shot and if you needed a basket you just ran to him. He made really tough three’s. He just overall played amazing.”

Quickley, who entered the contest as the SEC's top free-throw shooter with 91.2 percent, hit all six of his free throws, including two in the closing seconds to ice the game.

Kentucky freshman Tyrese Maxey was outstanding also. He scored 13 points along with a team-high seven rebounds and seven assists.

Sophomore Keyontae Johnson and graduate transfer Kerry Blackshear led the Gators with 19 and 18 points, respectively.

The Wildcats will travel to Texas A&M for a Tuesday night date. The 7 p.m. (EST) match up will be televised by ESPN. The Aggies, who defeated visiting Mississippi State 87-75 Saturday, are 14-12 overall (8-6 SEC).

"We're playing another team that's playing well," said Kentucky coach John Calipari of Texas A&M. "They're going to be feeling good. Buzz (Williams) is doing a great job with his team."

Singer Jordan Smith of "The Voice" fame performed the national anthem before the game. He is from Harlan, Ky.


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