Surely, the saying, “Third time’s a charm” must be true. For the second straight season, the UK Women’s team reached the Elite Eight as the No. 2 seed in the same bracket as top-seeded UConn. And for the second straight season, Geno Auriemma and his UConn Huskies defeated the Cats in a dominating 83-53 win to head to the Final Four, while the Cats end their season at 30-6.
For the third time in the past four seasons, Matthew Mitchell has done a tremendous job coaching the Cats to their three out of four Elite Eight appearances. But what’s wrong with this picture? Wasn’t this supposed to be the breakthrough year, considering Kentucky was the regular season champ in the SEC? The Cats simply weren’t able to keep up in this one.
After holding a one-point lead with nine minutes remaining in the first half, the Cats missed 13 of 14 shots down the stretch to end the first half. Meanwhile, Breeana Stewart lit up the Cats, finishing with 21 points on the night. The Cats’ defense wasn’t able to contain her no Kaleena Mosqueda-Lewis, her finished with 17 points. The Cats also shot 30% (19-62) on the night, which doesn’t help. The loss also ends the career of A’dia Mathies. Mathies is ranked No. 1 in steals (320) and games played (140), No. 2 in scoring (2,014) for UK Hoops. She is also one of five players (men’s or women’s) to score over 2,000 points, that list includes: Valerie Still, Dan Issel, Kenny “Sky” Walker, and Jack Givens. Hats off to A’dia on what has been an incredible career.