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Kentucky wins; Gillispie still has a job

Balanced scoring helps the Kentucky Wildcats survive the first round of the SEC Tournament.

TAMPA -- Kentucky handled its business on Thursday, defeating Ole Miss 71-58 in the SEC Tournament's first game of the day. Guess that means Kentucky coach Billy Gillispie still has a job tomorrow. Ole Miss coach Andy Kennedy might be gone, however, considering this happened earlier in the season.

The fourth-seeded Kentucky Wildcats (20-12) play one-seed LSU at 1 p.m. on Friday in a quarterfinal game. With minutes left in Kentucky's game against Ole Miss on Thursday, the Wildcats' fans began chanting, "L-S-U! L-S-U!" LSU defeated the Wildcats 73-70 during the regular season. 

Kentucky guard Jodie Meeks led the Wildcats with 25 points and Patrick Patterson had 15 points and 14 rebounds. Kentucky also received 13 points from forward Perry Stevenson and 12 points from guard Darius Miller. Balanced scoring was something the 'Cats lacked during the regular season. Kentucky lost seven of its final 10 games.

The most important statistic for Kentucky on Thursday was probably its relatively low number of turnvovers. UK only turned the ball over 10 times. In its loss to Florida, Kentucky had 23 turnovers. Would anyone really be surprised if Kentucky won this tournament?

-jo-

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