Thanks to a red-hot performance from freshman Jamal Murray (35 points, eight 3-pointers), Kentucky held on to a big first-half lead against Florida and avoided its first three-game losing streak since 2008-2009.
The Wildcats ran their home winning streak to 33 with an 80-61 win over the Gators.
MVP: Murray. His point total tied Terrence Jones for the most in the John Calipari era, and his eight threes tied Eric Bledsoe’s freshman record. The Kitchener, Ontario, native became the first player with two 30-point games since Calipari came to Lexington.
Starting lineup: Tyler Ulis, Jamal Murray, Isaiah Briscoe, Marcus Lee and Derek Willis
Off the bench: Skal Labissiere, Isaac Humphries and Charles Matthews.
Cleaning up the glass: Lee started in place of injured senior Alex Poythress … The Wildcats opened the game with a 24-5 lead and led, 50-31, at halftime … Ulis had an excellent game, scoring 18 points shooting 7-for-12 and adding 11 assists … Briscoe shot 1-for-6 for three points … Kentucky managed just eight points off the bench.
Previous game: Kentucky blows 21-point lead for second straight loss
What’s next: Tues., Feb. 9 vs. Georgia (9 p.m. ET)