Georgia earned revenge on Kentucky in the quarterfinals of the SEC Tournament, defeating the Cats 78-66 and knocking them out of SEC title contention.
The Dawgs stifled UK early on, gaining a 14-2 advantage on them with 3:00 to go in the first quarter as UK started off 1/11 from the field. From then on, they were ahead for the rest of the game and never really in danger of giving up their lead. A lot of the reason was Kentucky’s inability to contain UGA center Jenna Staiti, who had 20 points on 5/12 shooting from the field and 10/11 from the free throw line along with 12 rebounds.
Overall presence inside was an issue once again for the Cats, as they were outrebounded 40-32 and outscored in the paint 32-28. Georgia took 29 free throw shots, knocking down 23, while UK went just 7/10 from the stripe.
Having interior scoring and defense was not the only issue, as was getting help on offense for SEC Player of the Year Rhyne Howard. The junior guard scored 33 points on 13/24 shooting from the field, while the rest of the team had just 33 themselves. Senior guard Chasity Patterson was the team’s second highest leading scorer with 11 points on 4/7 shooting, but nobody else surpassed six.
Both weaknesses have been exposed throughout the season in wins and losses for the Cats, and they will once again in the NCAA Tournament. Whether or not they can find ways to counter consistently could be what carries them far in the postseason.