No.2 Wildcats and Trojans meet at Freedom Hall

Jan 3, 2012 - 3:41 PM Louisville, KY (Sports Network) - The second-ranked Kentucky Wildcats continue to prepare for the start of SEC action as they take on the Arkansas-Little Rock Trojans at Freedom Hall in Louisville this evening.

A member of the Sun Belt Conference, UALR was just 3-10 against non-league foes through the first 13 games of this season. Fortunately, the club has rallied to win its first two league bouts, the most recent of which was a 66-59 victory over Denver on New Year's Eve.

As for Kentucky, it is set to play this neutral-site tilt after five consecutive home games, all of which resulted in victory. The Wildcats are coming off a 69-62 triumph over rival Louisville on New Year's Eve that enabled them to move to 13-1 overall, and they will begin SEC action this Saturday against South Carolina.

This game marks the first-ever meeting between UALR and Kentucky on the hardwood.

Arkansas-Little Rock is far from explosive at the offensive end of the court this season, as the team is generating just 64.1 ppg on 41.4 percent field goal efficiency. Fortunately for the Trojans, they are yielding just 66.2 ppg, suggesting that the defense is good enough to keep them in most games. The top offensive performer for UALR is Will Neighbour with his 12.0 ppg, and he is tops in both rebounding (6.1 rpg) and blocks (16) as well. D'Andrew Williams checks in with 11.7 ppg and a team-best 61 assists, but he needs to improve his 39.2 percent shooting from the field in a big way. The third and final double-digit scorer on the roster is Chuck Guy, as the 37 percent shooter is netting 10.3 ppg. Against Denver a few days ago, the Trojans shot 20-of-27 from the foul line and earned a 34-25 rebounding edge. Another obvious reason for the win was that UALR held Denver to 39 percent shooting from the field.

Kentucky has three freshmen in the starting lineup, and two of them shined in the recent victory over Louisville. Michael Kidd-Gilchrist poured in 24 points in that affair, and he ripped down a staggering total of 19 rebounds as well. Anthony Davis netted 18 points to complement his 10 boards, six blocks and three steals for the Wildcats, who also received 10 points from Doron Lamb. Kentucky shot just 29.8 percent from the field in that tilt while committing 21 turnovers, but the club earned a commanding 57-31 rebounding advantage and limited the Cardinals to 32.3 percent shooting. Lamb, a sophomore, continues to pace Kentucky with 15.4 ppg on the strength of his 46.6 percent shooting from the field, while Kidd-Gilchrist checks in with 14.2 ppg and 7.7 rpg. Davis provides 12.1 ppg and 10.2 rpg, and his 64 blocks place him among the national leaders. Kentucky, which boasts six double-digit scorers in all, is racking up 81.6 ppg while limiting opponents to 59.3 ppg on 35 percent field goal efficiency.

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