No. 1 Kentucky survives Texas A&M, gets second straight OT win
For the second straight game, Kentucky's dreams of an undefeated season were unexpectedly put on the line in overtime. And for the second straight game, the Wildcats were able to come away with a gritty win.
It took 50 minutes of play, but Kentucky outlasted Texas A&M in College Station on Saturday in a 70-64 double OT win.
After scoring just 53 points in regulation -- its lowest output of the season -- the Wildcats managed just four in the first overtime period, and watched freshman forward Karl-Anthony Towns foul out of the game. Junior forward Willie Cauley-Stein had already fouled out in the second half, and sophomore guard Aaron Harrison would follow suit in the second overtime, but none of it stopped Kentucky.
Devin Booker came off the bench to score 18 points, including the free throws that provided the final margin. Tyler Ulis had only three points all game, but those points came on a pivotal three-pointer with 1:27 to go in double OT, which put the Wildcats up 66-63. The Aggies, who had fought neck-and-neck all day in a game that produced over 10 ties, were finally out of comebacks.
Texas A&M certainly had its chances in front of a raucous home crowd of 10,411. In the first overtime, two free throws by Tavario Miller gave the Aggies a 57-55 lead with 28 seconds remaining, but Trey Lyles scooped up a missed Aaron Harrison jumper, got fouled and made both free throws to prolong the game another five minutes.
A&M then twice led in the second overtime, but a key sequence by Lyles helped sway the game back in the Wildcats' favor. After a jumper by Lyles gave Kentucky its first lead in over six minutes, he immediately swatted away a shot by Tavario Miller on the other end, one of three blocks for him on the day.
Aggies junior guard Danuel House was the star of the game, playing all 50 minutes and racking up 25 points and nine rebounds.
Besides Booker, Aaron Harrison was the only other Wildcat in double figures with 12 points. Harrison, however, shot only 4-of-20 from the floor, including 2-of-13 from three. As a whole, Kentucky shot a dismal 28.1 percent from the floor, well below its season average of 48.6 percent.