LUBBOCK, Texas (WAVE) - Nick Richards was once again dominant as the 15th ranked Cats pick up a huge road win at #18 Texas Tech on Saturday night.
The first half was a back-and-forth struggle. Neither team led by more than four points in the first frame. Immanuel Quickley had the play of the half. With only 1.6 seconds remaining, Kentucky was inbounding the ball from the side. EJ Montgomery found a cutting Quickley who fired from mid-court and drained it to give the Cats a 36-34 halftime advantage.
UK was able to carry that momentum into the second half, building a 50-40 lead with just over 15 minutes remaining in regulation. Kentucky led 61-53 when Texas Tech reeled off eight straight points to tie the game. Tied at 63 with :28 to go, Nick Richards was fouled, but only made one of two free throws. On Tech’s next possession, Davide Moretti was fouled by Ashton Hagans with :18 left, but the usually dependable free throw shooter also only made one of two. We would head to overtime tied at 64.
In the OT, the Cats built a six point lead after Nate Sestina buried a three pointer with just over three minutes remaining. But once again, Texas Tech fought back to tie the game. Tied at 74 with :13 left, Red Raider forward, Terrance Shannon missed the go ahead shot, and UK’s Richards was fouled on the rebound. Richards would calmly drain both free throw attempts to give Kentucky a two point lead. One last chance to send the game to double overtime for Texas Tech, but Hagans pokes the ball away from Davide Moretti, and it goes out of bounds off Moretti. Kentucky wins 76-74. Richards led all scorers with 25 points and 14 rebounds. Quickley chipped in 21 points, including four three pointers.
The Red Raiders came into the game boasting a 54 game home non-conference winning streak. Their last loss was to another Southeastern Conference team, LSU back in December of 2013. UK is back in action on Wednesday hosting Vanderbilt.