Kentucky Basketball Defeats Monmouth 93-76

NEW YORK, NY - DECEMBER 09: Hamidou Diallo
NEW YORK, NY - DECEMBER 09: Hamidou Diallo /

Kentucky defeated Monmouth in the Citi Hoops Classic in New York City.

The Kentucky basketball team ran their winning streak to six after defeating Monmouth 93-76 in the Citi Hoops Classic in New York City. The Cats were led in scoring by their red-shirt freshman Hamidou Diallo. Diallo, a New York native, dropped 23 points.

The Wildcats led at halftime 54-31. Kentucky freshmen Quade Green and PJ Washington both had a very productive first half against the Hawks. Green and Washington combined to shoot 90% from the floor in the first half and accounted for 28 of Kentucky’s 54 first half points.

Kevin Knox, Kentucky’s leading scorer, struggled in the first half. Knox went 0-4 in the first half and had 5 turnovers. Knox finished with his lowest output of the season, scoring only four points.

The Wildcats were forced to play smaller than they’re used to, especially early. Sophomore center Sacha Killeya-Jones was sidelined with an injured ankle and Nick Richards was saddled with early foul trouble. Richards scored 10 points and had 8 rebounds. Tai Wynyard filled in for the injured Killeya-Jones and contributed 4 points in 12 minutes.

Shai Gilgeous-Alexander finished with 15 points, 9 assists and 6 rebounds. This was Gilgeious-Alexander’s fourth straight game in double figures. He shot 2-4 from downtown and UK finished 7-19 (36.8%) from behind the arc. John Calipari, earlier this week, said that the Wildcats needed to improve their outside shooting. Kentucky had averaged about 12 three-point attempts per game coming into today’s game.

Monmouth was never really in the game. The Wildcats held the Hawks to 37.1% shooting and forced 15 turnovers. Mounmouth’s leading scorer was Deion Hammond. The freshman scored 19 points. Micah Seaborn came into the game Monmouth’s leading scorer and racked up 18 points on 5-of-14 shooting from the field.

The Kentucky basketball team will get a week off and then welcome Buzz Williams and the Virginia Tech Hokies to Rupp Arena next Saturday.