No. 21 Kentucky rallies late, holds off Texas A&M 74-73

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LEXINGTON, Ky. (AP) – PJ Washington made a steal that led to Kevin Knox’s go-ahead layup with 2:28 left, then added four points down the stretch to help No. 21 Kentucky rally past Texas A&M 74-73 on Tuesday night.

Trailing 59-53 with 8:43 remaining, the Wildcats clawed back to tie the game three times before Washington stole a high pass and fed Knox for a 69-67 lead. Washington added a layup between two free throws for a 73-69 edge.

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The Aggies weren’t done, taking advantage of missed Kentucky free throws to get within a point with four seconds left on Robert Williams’ tip-in. Two Washington misses at the line set up a final chance for Texas A&M, but a long pass sailed out of bounds as time expired.

Hamidou Diallo had 18 points, Washington and Shai Gilgeous-Alexander had 16 each and Knox got 15 as Kentucky (13-3, 3-1 Southeastern Conference) bounced back from last weekend’s loss at No. 24 Tennessee. Gilgeous-Alexander also had seven rebounds and five assists starting in place of Quade Green, who was ruled out just before tipoff because of a back strain.

Tyler Davis had 21 points and Admon Gilder 14 for the Aggies (11-5, 0-4), who lost their second consecutive one-point game.

Texas A&M: Getting Williams (12 points, eight rebounds) and Gilder back in the lineup after illness and injury respectively was big for the Aggies, especially in the second half. But they faltered down the stretch to remain the SEC’s lone winless squad.

Kentucky: Green’s absence left the Wildcats with just Gilgeous-Alexander and Diallo among its regular guards. Gilgeous-Alexander effectively filled the void in his third start, making the game’s first basket and then some while pushing the quick tempo needed against the athletic Aggies.

Coming up next for both teams:

Kentucky visits Vanderbilt on Saturday.

Texas A&M visits No. 24 Tennessee on Saturday.

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Tom Kenny joined ABC 36 News in June of 2001 as a General Assignment Reporter. A native of Peoria, Illinois, he graduated cum laude with a Bachelor of Arts in Mass Communications from Western Illinois University. He currently anchors ABC 36 News at 5pm, 6pm and 11pm. Tom has more than three decades of experience in broadcast journalism. He is the only broadcast journalist in Lexington television history to be honored with a national Edward R. Murrow Award. Tom was recognized for reporting on a story that gave a rare glimpse inside the secretive world of the Federal Witness Protection Program. He has won an Emmy Award for anchoring and another for investigative reporting, exposing the deceit and potential danger of online diploma mills. Tom has ten other Emmy nominations to his credit for investigative and feature reporting. He has won Associated Press Awards for reporting and anchoring. He has won two Addy Awards for excellence in promotional writing. Tom was the first broadcast journalist in Lexington TV history to be awarded the Silver Circle Award by the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences. It is one of the highest honors given by NATAS. It recognizes television professionals who have performed distinguished service within the television industry for 25-years or more. Tom was honored for more than his longevity, he was recognized for making an enduring contribution to the vitality of the television industry and for setting high standards of achievement. He was also recognized for giving back to the community as a mentor, educator and volunteer. Tom also has network broadcast experience in radio and television having worked as a sports reporter for ESPN, Sportschannel, NBC Sports and the Breeders’ Cup. He was also the studio host and halftime producer for CBS Radio Sports’ College Football Game of the Week and covered the NFL for One-On-One Radio Sports. Prior to joining WTVQ-TV, Tom was Vice-President of the Houston Astros Minor League baseball team in Lexington. He was part of the original management team that brought professional baseball back to the Bluegrass after a nearly 50-year absence. Tom has lived in Lexington since 1984. In that time, he has been heavily involved with dozens of charity and civic groups, with a special emphasis on helping Veterans. He can be reached at tkenny@wtvq.com. You can also follow Tom on Facebook www.facebook.com/TomKennyABC and Twitter @TomKennyNews. Just click on the links at the top of the page.