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The Official Website of the Southeastern Conference
Rupp Arena - Lexington, KY

No. 2 Kentucky defeats Wright State to improve to 4-0

2626 days ago
Associated Press

LEXINGTON, Ky. -- Tyler Ulis scored a career-high 21 points, and No. 2 Kentucky beat Wright State 78-63 on Friday night.

The Wildcats (4-0) followed Tuesday night's impressive victory over No. 5 Duke by shooting 53 percent from the field, with the 5-foot-9 Ulis setting the tone by getting to the basket and the foul line. He was 5 for 9 from the field and 10 for 12 from the line with five assists, after he collected 18 points and six assists against the Blue Devils.

Kentucky held the Raiders (1-3) to 36 percent shooting and outrebounded them 37-27. Alex Poythress had 10 points and 10 rebounds, and Marcus Lee grabbed seven boards.

Sophomore guard Grant Benzinger, son of former major leaguer Todd Benzinger, had 19 points for Wright State.

Poythress, who sustained a season-ending left knee injury last December, posted his first double-double since a 10-point, 13-rebound effort against UNC Asheville last November. His performance included a midcourt steal leading to a monstrous dunk and an emphatic hang on the rim.

Not surprisingly, Kentucky enjoyed a 38-20 advantage in points in the paint, and its reserves topped Wright State 16-8. Starters Isaiah Briscoe (15 points), Jamal Murray (13 points) and Skal Labissiere (13) also scored in double figures.

The intense performance came just a few nights after answering coach John Calipari's challenge to show toughness against the Blue Devils, and it dropped Wright State to its third straight loss.

When Kentucky wasn't wrestling the Raiders for loose balls under the basket and on the floor, the Wildcats were fighting each other for rebounds. And there was the frequent sight of Briscoe harassing dribblers out, applying pressure even with his mouth guard dangling out of his mouth.

The combination helped the Wildcats to a 39-26 lead at the break. Wright State's perimeter shooting kept the game respectable for a while before Kentucky used its size and physicality to pull away.

JT Yoho added 13 points for Wright State, which went 6 of 14 from 3-point range.

Kentucky hosts Boston University on Tuesday night.