UCLA Basketball Takes Down #1 Kentucky


If the #1 team in the nation loses to UCLA Basketball in front of a national audience, does it make a sound? Yes… BOOM. Against all odds, the UCLA Basketball team defeated the Kentucky Wildcats at Pauley Pavilion, 87-77.

Who expected this? After the UCLA Basketball team was lambasted in Chicago last season in a game which they scored only 7 points in the first half against Kentucky in an eventual 83-44 Wildcat victory, the Bruins came out swinging as they lead the entire game in what was a blowout by UCLA standards.

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This was a shocker after the Bruins returned from the Maui Invitational 1-2 with loses against #5 Kansas and Wake Forest. Looking at how the Bruins would match up with Kentucky, almost everyone had the Wildcats winning. This game was not even close as the #1 team in the nation goes down at the hands of the Bruins.

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This was a fanatic display of focused, disciplined basketball. From the start, the Bruins pounced on Kentucky. They had balance, they had fire and they played as a team. The offense was evenly distributed, the defense was not only present but efficient and UCLA never got complacent.

One of the best aspects of this game was the continued emergence of center Thomas Welsh who finished the night with 21 points and 11 rebounds. Welsh, who has come into his own as a mid-range shooter, went 8-for-11 from the floor.

Although, Welsh was not alone in the scoring department as every starter was in double-digits. Collectively, UCLA shot 28-for-53 (52.8%) while Kentucky was 25-for-66 (37.9%).

The Bruin highlight of the night came from bench player, Prince Ali, who literally threw down a dunk in the face of Kentucky.

All in all, this is the best victory in the Steve Alford era. The Bruins came together and showed what they are made of. Though it has not been pretty in the Alford-era, this game proved that an Alford team can light the fire inside. UCLA Basketball still has a long way to go, but this win is proof that they are capable of bigger and btter things.