UK Hoops gives Mizzou first home loss

 

Kentucky Wildcats center DeNesha Stallworth (11) dribbles the ball during the second half of the University of Kentucky Hoops game vs. University of Florida at Memorial Coliseum in Lexington, Ky., on Thursday, January 3, 2013. UK won 76-69. Photo by Tessa Lighty | Staff

 

Staff report | @KyKernelSports

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Junior center DeNesha Stallworth scored a team-high 17 points as No. 6 UK Hoops (16-1, 4-0 SEC) rolled past Missouri, 69-43, Sunday for its 15th consecutive victory.

It is the first time the Tigers have lost at home this season after opening the 2012-13 campaign with 12 straight wins on their home floor.

The Cats showed no sign of having bus legs in a game it led from the first bucket to the last. UK started the game with a 23-4 run that spanned the first 10 minutes of play.

Mizzou (12-6, 1-3 SEC) struggled to even things on the scoreboard after UK’s early damage-inducing run.

The Tigers had bursts of their own toward the first half, including a 9-0 run, but found themselves trailing by 14 points at halftime.

UK continued to hold and extend its lead in the second half, helped by the fact it outrebounded Missouri, 40-37, and was a perfect 12-of-12 from the free throw line — a stark contrast with Thursday’s win over Texas A&M when the Cats were 8-of-19 from the charity strike.

Missouri, which led the nation averaging 9.9 3-pointers per game, was held to a season-low 2-of-20 from behind the arc as it failed to find a way back and took its first home loss of the season.

Stallworth added three steals, three blocks and three assists to her 17 points in 29 minutes of action. Senior guard A’dia Mathies tabbed 14 points and five rebounds, with sophomore guard Jennifer O’Neill scoring 11 points and a team-high four assists.

Junior forward Samarie Walker was held to two points, but did lead the Cats in rebounds by grabbing seven boards — all on the defensive end.

Missouri’s senior guard Sydney Crafton was the highest scoring Tiger, shooting 4-of-7 from the field on her way to a stat-line that featured 11 points, nine rebounds and three steals.

UK is next in action on Thursday when it takes on Mississippi State at Memorial Coliseum, with the action due to get under way at 7 p.m.

STAFF REPORT