Kentucky beats Missouri Western State in Exhibition

The Wildcats were able to fend off Western State (Divison II), coached by former men’s basketball manager Will Martin, in the first of two exhibition games on the schedule. ran away with the victory in the second half, winning by a final score of 56-38.

trailed at the first TV timeout, scored only 26 points before halftime, looked sloppy out of the break and ultimately finished out a 56-38 victory over Western State, a Division II team coming off a 14-17 season. Kentucky shot 40.4 percent from the floor, struggled from three-point range and was outrebounded 36-35 by the Griffons.

On Tuesday at the annual Kentucky basketball media day, head coach said that he liked how his team performed offensively in the Blue-White Game last Saturday. But, being a coach, Calipari also found flaws with his team’s effort in the intrasquad scrimmage.

“We stink defensively,” Calipari said. “And I told ’em, and I told some individuals, ‘Look, if you want to play, if you think you’re going to play, you’re not playing. You won’t play.’”

The Cats must have gotten the message during practice this week. While the offense struggled at times during ’s 56-38 win over on Sunday night at Rupp Arena, the team’s defensive effort was solid all the way around.

Kentucky held MWSU to just 16 of 52 (30.8 percent) shooting from the floor, including two of 15 (13.3 percent) from behind the arc.