Second-half play powers UK past Boston 91-57 (w/ VIDEO)


UK’s Josh Harrellson pulls up a shot during the first half of the University of Kentucky’s basketball game against Boston at Rupp Arena in Lexington, Ky., on 11/30/10. UK led the game at half 40-33. Photo by Mike Weaver

UK could hear yelling and screaming pulsating from the visitor’s locker room at halftime.

Boston University was within seven points of UK after 20 minutes of play — and in Rupp Arena. It looked like UK was jetlagged from the trip to Maui in the first half.

Then the Cats turned on the jets, roaring to 12 straight points out of the break and burying Boston 91-57.

“When we were in there, you could hear the other team yelling and screaming because they were only down seven,” said freshman Doron Lamb, who scored 13 points off the bench. “So, we just wanted to come out at the beginning of the second half and be more aggressive.”

The Cats came out not only more aggressive, but more accurate. UK made 8-of-10 3-pointers in the second half.

“It sure beats missing them,” UK assistant coach John Robic said.

The sharpshooting helped UK on a 28-5 run to start the half and put the game out of reach.

“We were hoping to just hang and hang as long as we could,” Boston head coach Patrick Chambers said. “And that spurt in the first five minutes (of the second half) was just crushing, absolutely crushing.”

Freshman Brandon Knight, like the team, started off sluggish, with two early turnovers and a 3-point air ball on his first shot of the game.

But he found his rhythm soon enough and keyed UK’s 12-0 run to start the second half with a pull-up jumper in transition and a 3-pointer. He finished with 23 points on 8-for-12 shooting.

“They started playing me for the pass, and I had a lot of open shots that just fell,” Knight said. “I just let the game come to me.”

Knight said he had an emphasis on distributing the ball early in the game, a move that led to six assists on the game.

“He was proud of the number of assists he had tonight, which is a different mentality for him,” Robic said.

Being proud of statistics was something senior center Josh Harrellson agreed with. He managed a double-double by scoring 12 points and grabbing 11 rebounds, but there was something else that made the game unusual for him.

“Today was the first time I have ever tried to take a charge,” Harrellson said.

The game was also marked by the UK player’s tribute to head coach John Calipari’s mother, who passed away Sunday.

UK’s players wore black socks, and some donned black armbands to honor Calipari’s mother, Donna Calipari. The idea originated from the players, and Calipari called his dad after the game to tell him about the players’ gesture, Robic said.

“He thanked us after the game,” Harrellson said. “It meant a lot to him, we’re just happy to be there for him and show him we love and support him.”


VIDEO: UK assistant coach John Robic discusses UK’s win:

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Part 3: