UK basketball dominates Centre to finish preseason


Kentucky freshman forward PJ Washington makes a dunk during the game against Centre College at Rupp Arena on Friday, November 3, 2017 in Lexington, Ky. Photo by Arden Barnes | Staff

For their final tune-up before the regular season, the UK basketball team dominated the Centre College Colonels Friday night 106-63.

The scoring wealth was spread around, as every Cat that played at least five minutes in the game scored a goal, but Wenyen Gabriel led the Cats with 20 points.

The rebounding woes that were prevalent against Morehead State in their last exhibition didn’t plague the Cats as they outrebounded the Colonels 52-17. The contribution on the boards mostly came from forward Kevin Knox, who had 11 and Gabriel, who had nine. Forward Sacha Killeya-Jones also contributed nine more.

Knox also notched the team’s third double-double of the preseason. Knox scored 15 while grabbing 11 shots off the boards.

The first half showcased an impressive effort from the Colonels, as they drew the game within single digits halfway through.They cut the lead to as low as six before UK went on a seven and a half minute 24-2 run to give them a 52-24 lead into halftime.

The Colonels were led by sophomore guard Perry Ayers, who scored 14 points on 5-9 shooting, beating the Cats off the dribble several times. He also contributed one rebound and one steal for Centre.

From that point, the Cats took over the rest of the game as they outscored Centre 54-39 in the second half, showcasing their dominance to end their preseason.

Point guard Quade Green was especially effective in the second half, scoring 10 points and dishing out four assists in the second half to help lead the Cats.

The Cats bettered the Colonels on both sides of the ball, shooting an efficient 61.5 percent from the floor, while only allowing 38.3 percent of Centre’s shots to go in. Shot blocking was a large part of this, as the Cats swatted seven shots, led by three from forward P.J. Washington.

Washington also contributed 10 points, four rebounds and two assists in the win, continuing his excellent preseason.

The No. 5 Cats will start their regular season next Friday, Nov. 10, when they’ll take on Utah Valley at 7 p.m.