KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WJHL) – After 25-consecutive victories in Thompson-Boling Arena, Tennessee men’s basketball felt the sting of defeat in Knoxville, as the Wildcats upset the Volunteers on Saturday afternoon.
UK’s victory also snapped No. 5 Tennessee’s five-game win streak.
The Big Orange opened the game on an 8-0 run, taking a commanding lead – only to see the Cats return the favor with a 13-2 burst. Another 12-3 run from the visitors set them ahead 33-26 headed into the locker room.
The Vols battled back, tying the game with 5:30 to play and were down just two with less than a minute remaining. However, UK held on, 63-56.
Tennessee senior Uros Plavsic turned in a career-best 19 points in the loss, before fouling out. Santiago Vescovi (13 pts) was the only other Vol to finish in double figures.
Antonia Reeves splashed home 18 points for Kentucky, while Oscar Tshiebwe wracked up 15 points and 13 boards.
The Wildcats dominated UT on the glass, out-rebounding them 43-23.
“There’s a lot of things that I’m obviously disappointed with our guys but you got to give Kentucky all the credit it the world,” Tennessee head coach Rick Barnes said. “They came in, coming off obviously a tough loss and they won the game, they won it.”
“They just wanted to win more,” Vols senior Josiah-Jordan James said. “They came in for forty minutes they were more aggressive and more physical and that’s the result, you lose games when you don’t play to win.”
The Vols (14-3, 4-1 SEC) face a quick turnaround, as they travel to Mississippi State on Tuesday. Tip-off is on for 7 p.m.