UK set for last home game of regular season against the Aggies


Kentucky head coach Matthew Mitchell looks up at the score board during the game. University of Kentucky women’s basketball team lost to South Carolina 74-70 at Memorial Coliseum on Thursday, Jan. 31, 2018, in Lexington, Kentucky. Photo by Michael Clubb| Staff

Jake Maynard

Maci Morris, Taylor Murray and the rest of the Wildcat seniors are set to play their final game at Memorial Coliseum on Thursday against Texas A&M.  

“Texas A&M has had a great season up to this point and we had a very tough game with them in College Station, and they’re a difficult matchup for us. Really good players,” Kentucky head coach Matthew Mitchell said.

Morris is Kentucky’s No. 6 all-time leading scorer with 1,630 career points and second in career three-pointers made with 242. The senior is also first in career three-point percentage with 40.9 percent. Murray’s 427 assist is No. 6 in school history and her 272 steals ties her with Patty Jo Hedges for No. 6 all-time.  

The senior tandem will have their work cut out for them against a tough Texas A&M game as the Aggies are ranked No. 19 in the nation by ESPN. They have a 21-6 record and are 10-4 in conference play.  

Texas A&M has two top-25 wins this season– their marquee win came earlier in the season against the then No. 8 Oregon State Beavers. Chennedy Carter, a 5-foot-7 sophomore guard, led the Aggies in that game with 27 points.  

Their second top-25 win was against Kentucky at Texas A&M when the Aggies took home the 73-71 victory. Morris led all scorers with 22 points and Carter led the Aggies with 20 points. A&M shot 70 percent from deep, a feat that will be very difficult to duplicate in the two teams’ second matchup.

Morris has been on a shooting drought in her team’s last three games– she shot 2-of-11 against Arkansas, 3-of-12 at South Carolina and 3-of-8 against LSU. Combined, she has shot just 8-of-31, or 25.8 percent, in the last three games.

On the other hand, Morris’ fellow senior Taylor Murray has been on a hot streak. She has shot 63.6 percent over the past three games and has scored 16, 17 and 18 points in those three previous games.  

N’Dea Jones, a 6-foot-4 redshirt senior,  leads the Aggies in rebounds with an average of 11.1 per game. She is two inches taller than Kentucky’s tallest rotation players, Howard and Tatyana Wyatt. Despite Jones’ rebounding abilities, the Wildcats out-rebounded the Aggies 34-to-31 in their previous meeting.  

Rebounding has been a focus for Mitchell and his team this season. A strong rebounding performance for the Wildcats would go a long way toward securing their fifth top-25 win of the season.

“I’d love to have a big crowd for the last home game of the season, potentially,” Mitchell said. “So, it’s the last chance to see a crew that has really worked hard and has got a lot out of the season so far. There’s a lot to accomplish tomorrow night with a victory.”

Tip-off is set for 7:00 p.m. on Thurs. Feb. 22, at Memorial Coliseum and will be televised on SEC Network+.