Kentucky has made a habit of erasing big deficits in recent days. The Wildcats trailed West Virginia by 17 and Vanderbilt by 14 in their last two games, but made roaring comebacks to win both. They would not be so lucky against Missouri on Saturday.
The Tigers smothered Kentucky’s offense on their way to a 69-60 home win. It’s the first time Missouri has ever beaten UK — the program was 0-10 against the Wildcats entering the day.
Kentucky got off to a particularly heinous start, scoring only 18 first half points by shooting just 20 percent from the field.
Missouri got a big game from senior forward Jordan Barnett, who put in a game-high 16 points. Jontay Porter (13 points, eight rebounds) also helped pace the Tigers in the win.
Shai Gilgeous-Alexander led Kentucky with 15 points.
Kentucky still can’t shoot
Kentucky missed their first 14 three-pointers against Mizzou. They didn’t hit their first triple of the day until there was 2:51 remaining in the game, when Wenyen Gabriel finally connected from deep. Kentucky finished the game 2-of-18 (11.1 percent) on threes.
Shooting has been Kentucky’s biggest weakness all season. That isn’t going to change any time soon.
The Wildcats are taking just 24.9 percent of their shots from deep. That ranks No. 347 out of 351 D1 teams. Kentucky entered the game hitting a respectable 35 percent of their threes, but the roster is built on size and athleticism, not perimeter shooting skill.
There’s no denying the five-star talent John Calipari has put in place, but the fit of those pieces always seemed questionable.
The loss drops Kentucky to 17-6 on the season and 6-4 in conference. Mizzou, meanwhile, improves to 15-8 overall and 5-5 in SEC play.