Kentucky Finishes In Tie For 2nd In SEC, But TyTy Washington hurt

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No. 7 Kentucky finished tied for second in the Southeastern Conference after winning 71-63 at Florida Saturday afternoon to close the regular season.

The Wildcats (25-6, 14-4) will be the third seed for the SEC Tournament beginning Wednesday in Tampa, Florida, behind No. 2 seed and 13th-ranked Tennessee (23-7, 14-4) via tiebreakers after the Volunteers beat Arkansas (24-7, 13-5).

No. 5 Auburn (27-4, 15-3) won the SEC outright after beating South Carolina (18-12, 9-9).

Forward Oscar Tshiebwe led Kentucky with 27 points and 15 rebounds with two blocked shots. He turned in his 25th double-double of the season.

“He’s a been a beast,” Kentucky coach John Calipari said. “Oscar does what he does.”

Point guard Sahvir Wheeler added 13 points with four assists.

“I thought Sahvir ran a great game,” Calipari said. “Just ran us in the second half. It was great.”

Point guard TyTy Washington scored 10 points with six assists and five rebounds, but left the game after 26 minutes with another lower leg injury as he has been hampered throughout the season.

“He may be out a week or two,” Calipari said. “Could be a muscle. It could be something that separated because he got hit hard.”

Forward Colin Castleton led Florida (19-12, 9-9) with 23 points and 11 rebounds.

In other SEC action Saturday involving ranked teams, No. 25 Alabama fell at LSU, 80-77, in overtime in Baton Rouge as each team finished 9-9 in the league.

The Tide (19-12) lost its second straight, while the Tigers (21-10) snapped a string of three losses in four games. LSU also ended a five-game losing streak to Alabama, which last lost to the Tigers on Jan. 29, 2020.

Forward Darius Days celebrated Senior Day with a game-high 24 points along with seven rebounds and three steals.

“By far, if not his best, one of his best games,” LSU coach Will Wade said. “He’s been phenomenal. He’s been rock solid. He’s the best. We haven’t had one issue with him in four years. One of the only times you’ll see a four-year player. Just doesn’t happen.”

The Tigers, who entered the game second in the nation in steals with 11 a game, grabbed 16. Forward Tari Eason scored 20 points with nine rebounds and three steals.

The game was tied 72-72 after regulation. Guard Keon Ellis scored 19 to lead Alabama, and guard Jahvon Quinerly added 16.

Mississippi State (19-11, 8-9) was scheduled to play at Texas A&M (17-13, 8-9) at 8:30 p.m. eastern Saturday on the SEC Network with the winner getting in better position on the NCAA Tournament bubble entering the SEC Tournament.

Written by Glenn Guilbeau

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