LEXINGTON, KY (UK Athletics)- Maci Morris scored a season-high 22 points and three other Wildcats reached double figures as the Kentucky women’s basketball team topped High Point 71-49 on Sunday afternoon at Memorial Coliseum.
Morris, the senior from Bell County (Ky.) High School, made eight of her 16 shots from the field, including a pair of three-pointers, to go along with a perfect four-of-four showing at the free throw line. Morris added five rebounds, two blocked shots, an assist and a steal in the game.
Fellow senior Taylor Murray had 14 points and three steals for the Cats, while freshmen Blair Green and Rhyne Howard each scored 10.
Kentucky (4-0) hit 26 of its 59 shots (44.1 percent) from the field, including six of 16 (37.5 percent) from behind the arc. But the Wildcats held High Point to just 28.3 percent shooting (15-53) in the game and forced 19 Panther turnovers.
High Point took an early 5-0 lead, as Kentucky missed its first five shots from the field. The Wildcats got on the board when Morris connected on a pair of free throws with 6:40 left in the first period. Amanda Paschal hit two free throws to cut the lead to 5-4 with 5:27 left in the period. The Cats’ first made field goal came on a jumper by Morris with 4:08 left in the first period, but Kentucky still trailed 7-6 at that point.
But Morris’ field goal was part of a 16-0 run that Kentucky used to close the first quarter. The Wildcats led 20-7 after one period, making six of their final eight shots from the field in the period.
In the second quarter, High Point used a 9-4 run, including back-to-back three-pointers from Emma Bockrath, to cut the UK lead to 26-16 with 6:22 left in the half. But Kentucky answered with threes from Howard and Morris to lead 32-18 with 4:47 remaining in the half. Kentucky would lead by as many as 17 points in the quarter before settling for a 42-28 lead at the half. Morris led the Cats with 13 points and Murray had 12 in the game’s first 20 minutes.
High Point scored the first three points of the third quarter, but Kentucky scored the next seven to extend its lead to 49-31. In fact, Kentucky would assemble a 15-4 run to take a 57-35 lead with 1:49 left in the quarter. Kentucky forced five High Point turnovers in the third quarter and turned those into 12 points, and the Cats would lead 57-37 after three periods of play.
In the fourth quarter, Kentucky would lead by as many as 26 points, eventually winning by the 22-point final margin.
Bockrath, a senior guard from Dayton, Ohio, led High Point with 14 points.
Kentucky returns to action on Thursday, facing South Florida in the 2018 Paradise Jam in the Virgin Islands. Tipoff is set for 1 p.m. ET and the game can be seen on FloHoops.com.