For the 4th time this year, the Missouri Tigers (19-8, 8-6) lost a road game after holding a lead with less than one minute left in the game. Tonight, the Tigers held a 75-73 lead over Kentucky (19-8, 10-4) with 54 seconds remaining. Willie Cauley-Stein answered with 40 seconds left, to tie the game at 75. Both teams came up empty on their final possessions, and the game was sent into overtime.
Kentucky pulled away from Missouri in overtime, and earned a 90-83 victory. The win was huge for Kentucky, as they needed to prove they could beat a quality team without Nerlens Noel. The victory doesn’t guarantee the Wildcats a spot in the NCAA Tournament but it certainly helps. Before Saturday’s game, ESPN’s Joe Lunardi had Kentucky in the first four out category.
Julius Mays had a big game for Kentucky. Mays scored 24 points and hit 4 three pointers. Cauley-Stein was also huge for the Wildcats. Cauley-Stein helped replace Noel by grabbing 12 rebounds and blocking 7 shots.
Phil Pressey had an excellent game at Kentucky which is rare of him on the road in 2012-2013. Pressey had 27 points and 10 assists. He did an excellent job of penetrating the Wildcat’s defense and creating shots for his teammates. Pressey did have a key turnover late in overtime, but it’s hard to be too critical of his performance on Saturday.
Alex Oriaki finished the game with 16 points and 15 rebounds before fouling out in the last minute of overtime.
The loss drops the Tigers into 6th place in the SEC standings. Missouri will travel to South Carolina on Thursday and then will host LSU on Saturday.