Knox leads UK to victory over Illinois-Chicago
LEXINGTON (AP) — Kevin Knox scored a career-high 25 points to lead No. 8 Kentucky to a 107-73 victory over the University of Illinois-Chicago on Sunday night to conclude play in the Adolph Rupp Classic.
The win gave Kentucky coach John Calipari his 700th career victory, three years after he notched his 600th. He is the 39th coach to reach the milestone.
Knox led seven Kentucky players in double figures in one of the team’s best offensive showings of the season. Hamidou Diallo had a career-best 19 points, PJ Washington added 17 and Shai Gilgeous-Alexander had 14.
The Wildcats scored a season-high 52 points in the first half, paced by Knox’s 15. Diallo added 11, including a thunderous one-handed slam dunk. Gilgeous-Alexander came off the bench for 10 points.
Knox, Gilgeous-Alexander and Diallo combined for 14 of Kentucky’s 20 field goals in the first half.
Godwin Boahen led the Flames (2-3) with 17 points, followed by Tai Odiase with 15. Dikembe Dixon had 14 and Dominique Matthews contributed 12.
UIC: The Flames fell to 3-6 against Southeastern Conference opponents. UIC owns wins over Texas A&M (2001), Mississippi (2005) and Vanderbilt (2008). Flames guard Dominique Matthews is the younger brother of former Kentucky guard Charles Matthews, a sophomore at the University of Michigan. UIC collected six blocks against the Wildcats, including three by Tai Odiase.
Kentucky: Knox, Diallo, Richards and Washington have started all seven games this season. Richards had 25 points and 15 rebounds in an 86-67 victory over Fort Wayne on Thursday. Quade Green, Diallo, Richards, Knox and Washington started against the Flames.
UIC: The Flames conclude play in the four-game Adolph Rupp Classic at Troy on Wednesday before taking on rival Loyola of Chicago Saturday, the last of three straight road games for UIC.
Kentucky: The Wildcats have a six-day break before taking on Harvard on Saturday. It will be the Wildcats’ longest break of the season. After opening the season with seven games since Nov. 10, Kentucky plays six games during a four-week span in December.