Posted: 5:44 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 22, 2013
By Glenn Logan
Kentucky fought valiantly in front of a sold-out Rupp Arena crowd, but was unable to extend their non-conference home winning streak.
This was just one of those games, ladies and gentlemen of the Big Blue Nation, that simply didn't go Kentucky's way in any aspect. There was no lack of effort on the part of the Wildcats, but unfortunately, they simply couldn't do what you have to do to win basketball games; put the ball through the hoop.
Congratulations to the Duke lady Blue Devils on an outstanding game. They had a very good game plan coming into Rupp Arena today, and that was to utilize their superior size to defeat Kentucky. They did that, especially Tricia Liston, who Kentucky simply couldn't match up with. Liston had a huge game with 28 points and was simply too much for Kentucky to handle. Duke played very good team basketball and did a nice job in transition. They also did a very good job of handling Kentucky's press and getting runouts.
For Kentucky, this was just a game that too many things were going against them. They were a bit too small with the absence of DeNesha Stallworth, they got a surprisingly unfriendly whistle in front of a sold-out Rupp Arena crowd, and they simply shot the ball as if they were required to do so with one eye closed, especially from the free throw line.
This is not a bad loss for Kentucky. Getting beat, even at home by the #2 team in the land should not cause fans to throw up their hands and give up, especially since Stallworth should return to the lineup before the SEC season gets too far along, and it's when she gets back that Kentucky will be hard to beat. Right now, the lack of size is going to hurt UK against better basketball teams if they have cold shooting nights, as they did today.
Basketball is a game of minutiae, and it was the little things that hurt Kentucky today, like shooting unopposed 15 footers. Still, that's going to happen from time to time. The effort was there, even if the execution was not, and Kentucky did have a chance to win this game with only a few things going the other way. That's encouraging, if a bit retrospective now.
The Wildcats have one more non-conference game, against Grambling, on the 29th of December. After that, it's on the road to Alabama and the lady Crimson Tide on the second day of 2014.