SEC Championship Predictions: Can Tennessee beat Kentucky again? 3/11/18

Lynette Rowe
March 12, 2018

The Wildcats are 23-10 on the season, and beat up on the Alabama Crimson Tide in the SEC Tournament on Saturday.

Beating Florida for the first time in five years?

The SEC championship comes to us on Selection Sunday as the #4 seed Kentucky Wildcats take on the #2 seed Tennessee Volunteers in a college basketball matchup.

The Bulldogs now likely need an upset over the second seeded Vols to feel good about their at-large NCAA Tournament chances.

Six more of those and Calipari can watch his team climb another ladder at the end of a much bigger tournament. "It's not hitting me yet".

Tennessee coach Rick Barnes said the first two games between the two teams won't matter in the league finale. If the Vols win their first round game, they would play the victor of Miami (FL) and Loyola Chicago. He was 7 for 7 in the half and scored 17 of his 19 points in the first 20 minutes. To begin the second half, UT was 1-of-8 from the floor. "They're both outstanding coaches who have really, really good teams, but we have got a good team, too". Guard Daryl Macon said that gave the Vols an edge they won't have against Kentucky.

The Tennessee Volunteers survived Mississippi State 62-59 Friday night, and though the game was closer than many liked, Vols fans are feeling optimistic.

"I thought the toll of three days might have caught up with us", Anderson said.

"But we have a lot of respect for Gregg [Marshall] and his program and Mick [Cronin] and his program. They dug down real deep after being down 19 at halftime".

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Jordan Bone set the tone for Tennessee's first-half shooting exhibition and finished with 19 points.

Gabriel, who earned a spot on the SEC All-Tournament team with 23 points Saturday and 12 points, 6 rebounds, 3 steals and 2 blocks Sunday, went a step further.

"Starting the game we were really aggressive and shots were falling", Tennessee guard Jordan Bone said. We're just ready, man. "Congratulations to him. He helped us a lot, but collectively as a team we just didn't get the job done". That marked a season-high for field-goal percentage in a half this season by the Vols, surpassing 71.4 percent against Ole Miss at home on February 2.

"We didn't have any energy today", Macon said. "I think we can do that". He was prone on the court when play came back his way and Tennessee's Kyle Alexander accidentally came down in the area of his head when contesting a layup. Admiral Schofield scored 16 points and 7 rebounds. Jaylen Barford added 14, while Anton Beard posted 11.

Alexander added seven rebounds and two blocks while Williams pulled down five boards, dished out four assists and also blocked a shot. "We just have a standard we're trying to play towards".

No one probably knew that Green's shot brought UK's first-half lead to its zenith: 33-16. "But we came out in the second half and played better".

Tennessee won 13 SEC games and shared the regular season championship with Auburn, but comes to the gateway city this weekend looking for the ultimate tiebreaker: an SEC Tournament Championship.

"That's the blessing of a double bye", Schofield said.

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