It wasn’t pretty, but the Kentucky Wildcats took advantage of a late controversial call and held on to defeat the upset minded Vanderbilt Commodores 60-58 at Memorial Gym in Nashville. With Kentucky up 58-55, Nerlens Noel scored on a jumper with :18 seconds left when it appeared that the shot clock had expired. Apparently that could not be reviewed and the basket stood, giving UK a 60-55 lead. Kedren Johnson hit a three pointer for Vanderbilt and the Commodores had a chance to tie or win the game when UK turned the ball over with :07 remaining. Kentucky played a smothering defense and a last second three point attempt by Johnson was not good, preserving the win for the Wildcats.
Kentucky (10-4) was led by Ryan Harrows 16 points and Nerlens Noel scored 13 while Vanderbilt was led by Kedren Johnson’s 18. It did not look like Kentucky would need any late dramatics as they led 47-31 at the 13:49 mark, but the Commodores (6-7) went on a 18-0 over the next seven minutes or so and took the lead. This game was the Southeastern Conference opener for both teams.