(WAVE) - #13 Kentucky needed a big second half from Nick Richards to overcome a 10 point second half deficit in a 71-62 win over Vanderbilt. It was the Commodores 25th straight Southeastern Conference loss.
Richards, limited to just five minutes in the first half by foul trouble, finished with 15 points and 11 rebounds.
Maxey finished with 17 points. “He was more aggressive and he made some plays, things that he hadn’t been doing,” UK head coach John Calipari said about Maxey.
Richards was the difference.
“You need Nick,” Calipari said. “He gets in foul trouble on dumb fouls, you can’t do that to us. We need you on the court. He is in unbelievable condition, the difference in the second half.”
A Maxwell Evans three-pointer gave Vandy a 35-28 halftime lead.
Coach Cal did not light his team up in the locker room at the half.
“They played harder than we played in the first half, so you’re losing the half,” Calipari said. “Second half I thought we competed pretty good.”
“Honestly he was pretty calm in the locker room,” Maxey said. “Coach Barbee and Coach Payne were the ones that were pretty animated and I think they fired us up to go out there and play how we normally play.”
The Cats improve to 16-4, 6-1 in the SEC. Vandy falls to 8-12, 0-7.
UK visits #17 Auburn (18-2, 5-2) on Saturday at 3 p.m.