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2016-17 Season Analytical Writings
The Cats have rolled out their 2016-17 season with an 8-1 start, and Sunday afternoon's game against Hofstra in the Barclay Center in Brooklyn, New York will mark the 1/3 mark on this regular season, yet the season is barely one month old and has three full months for the next 21 games prior to the SEC Tournament. This will be the 10 th game in 31 days. Over the next 30 days, the Cats will only play 6 times, and will not enjoy the friendly confines of Rupp Arena again until January 3, 2017 when Texas A&M comes calling.
The Cats 10 th game of this season will against the Hofsta Pride of the Colonial Athletic Association. Last season, the Pride finished tied for first place in their conference with a record of 24-10; 14-4. In 2015, Hofstra also finished with a winning record, 20-14; 10-8. Hofstra has started the 2016-17 season 6-4, but one of their 6 wins came against a non-D1 opponent, reducing their D1 record to 5-4. The “best” win in the mix thus far has been at #220 Florida Atlantic by 8 points. The Pride has lost games at #326 Sacred Heart by 4 and at #228 Manhattan by 12.
Hofstra enters this game with an ANE of -0.058 points per possession against a strength of schedule of -0.0371 ppp. The Cats enter this game with an ANE of 0.322 ppp against a strength of schedule of - -0.0062 ppp. The ANE analysis indicates a UK win by 29 points, 92-63 at a pace of 75 possessions. This would produce game efficiencies of 1.225 ppp and 0.839 ppp. Pomeroy sees this game in UK's favor by 22 points, 93-71 at a pace of 75 possessions.
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Coach Calipari says he is still looking for the starter at the #4 spot, either Derek Willis or Wenyen Gabriel and Derek Willis will start today. The starters are Derek Willis, Edrice (BAM) Adebayo, De'Aaron Fox, Malik Monk, and Isaiah Briscoe.
Kentucky controls the opening tip, and scores on its first possession. After a 3 pointer by Derek Willis lifts the Cats to a 5-0 lead, Hofstra scores on back to back possessions to trim the lead to 1 point. After Derek Willis makes a baseline jump shot, Hofstra has trouble crossing mid-court and must burn an early timeout, down 7-4. The teams trade baskets to the end of the opening segment, with the Cats lead at 3 points, 9-6, and Isaiah Briscoe will have a pair of free throws after the break. In an extended second segment, the Cats extend their lead to 10 points, 24-14, at the under 12 media timeout with 10:13 remaining and the Pride in possession.
In the first 10 minutes, the Cats have had 18 possessions (72 possession pace) and scored 24 points (1.333 ppp) while the Pride have had 17 possessions to score 14 points (0.824 ppp). The cats are 10-15 from the field and Hofstra is 5-17 from the field. In the third segment, the Cats manage to extend their lead to 11 points, but a 3 pointer by Hofstra trims that lead back to 8 points, 31-23, at the under 8 media timeout with 7:12 remaining in the first half.
In the fourth segment, the Cats appear to be sleep walking through this game, and allow Hofstra to climb to within 3 points, 36-33 at the under 4 media timeout. After this break, Edrice (BAM) Adebayo will be at the line for the bonus. After a relatively fast pace in the first 10 minutes, the pace has ground to a very slow pace, with only 11 possessions in the last 7 minutes. In the final segment, the Cats shut Hofstra out and extend the fragile 3 point lead to 15 points, 48-33 at the half.
The Cats scored 48 points on 37 possessions, 1.300 points per possession, and HOFSTRA managed their 33 points on 37 possessions, 0.892 ppp. The Cats made 52.9% (18-33) of their first half shots, including 5-11 (45.5%) from outside the arc. HOFSTRA managed to make 33.3% (10-30) of their first half shots, including 3-10 (30.0%) from outside the arc.
The Cats made 7-11 free throws (63.6%) and HOFSTRA made 10-16 (62.5%) in the first half.
The Cats committed 5 turnovers while forcing HOFSTRA to commit 8.
On the Boards, the Cats and the Pride each got 20 rebounds in the first half, and Hofstra won the offensive glass 10-8, producing a huge advantage on second chance points, 12-2. The Cats secured 44.4% of their misses and allowed HOFSTRA to grab 45.5% of their misses as second chance opportunities.
Hofstra opens the second half, but fail to score. The Cats ride 6-6 shooting and one turnover to a 62-36 lead, forcing Hofstra to take a timeout with 16:07 remaining in the game. In the second segment of the second half, the Cats lead by 23 points, 72-49 at the under 12 media timeout with 11:14 remaining in the game. In the third segment, the Cats extend the lead to a game high 29 points, 84-55, at the under 8 media timeout with only 6:52 remaining in the game.
At the under 5 media timeout, the Cats lead by 27, 90-63.
It's Calipari time with 2:34 remaining, the Cats leading 94-65 on 70 possessions. Cats win 96-73, 23 points on 75 possessions.
UK scored its 96 points on 77 possessions (1.247 ppp) for the game, and HOFSTRA scored its 73 points on 78 possessions (0.936 ppp).
Hofstra won the battle of the boards 45-41, and Hofstra won the battle of the offensive glass 19-12. Kentucky used its 12 second chance possessions to score 7 second chance points, and HOFSTRA used its 19 second chance possessions to score 24 second chance points. HOFSTRA had an offensive efficiency of 0.628 ppp on its 78 first chance possessions and 1.263 ppp for its 19 econd chance possessions. UK had 1.156 ppp on its 77 first chance possessions and 0.583 ppp on its 12 second chance possessions. With respect to the offensive rebounding, UK grabbed 31.6% of its misses as offensive rebounds while HOFSTRA was able to convert 39.6% of its misses into bonus possessions with offensive rebounds.
UK hit poorly from the free throw line in this game, making 14-21 [66.7%]. HOFSTRA made 23-37 [62.2%] for the game. Field goal shooting for UK was 37-72 overall [51.4%] and 8-23 from long range [34.8%]. For HOFSTRA, their field goal shooting from inside the arc was 16-43 [37.2%] and from long range, HOFSTRA hit 6-22 [27.3%].
The Cats committed 7 turnovers, one for every 11.0 possessions. The Cats forced 14 HOFSTRA turnovers, one for every 5.6 possessions.
Next Game On Schedule: Saturday afternoon at LasVegas, Nevada against North Carolina in the eleventh regular season game of the 2016-17 season.
Submitted by Richard Cheeks