Georgia Bulldogs give Kentucky a scare, but fall short down stretch


The Georgia Bulldogs were trying to do what nobody had been able to all season, beat the No. 1 Kentucky Wildcats.

Georgia (19-10, 10-7 SEC) came as close as anyone had, but wasn’t able to sink free throws and hit open shots in the closing minutes, and allowed Kentucky (30-0, 17-0 SEC) to stage a comeback for a 72-64 win at Stegeman Coliseum.

Let’s just put the positive spin on this one right from the start. Georgia was tied at 32 coming out of the first half, and was playing stellar defense against one of the most talented offensive teams in the nation. The Bulldogs also extended a lead as big as nine points in the second half, and had Kentucky fighting until the last minute began to tick away.

The crowd at Stegeman was as loud as its been in a long time, even with a good-sized contingent of Kentucky fans on hand (but we all know Big Blue Nation travels like no other team in college hoops).

John Calipari gave plenty of credit to Mark Fox and the Bulldogs, and you have to think that he’s hoping he doesn’t have to meet this team again in the NCAA Tournament.

More from Georgia Basketball

The hero for the Bulldogs all night long was senior Nemanja Djurisic, who put up a team-high 18 points, and added six rebounds. Without his good work down in the paint, this one could have been ugly for Georgia.

The Bulldogs also missed plenty of open 3-point attempts, only going 3-for-17 from behind the arc. That combined with late troubles at the charity stripe sunk the Bulldogs as much as anything. It was Georgia’s game to win, they simply failed to execute down the stretch and allowed Kentucky to go on a 16-2 run.

But a strong game and an almost-win against Kentucky will still look good on Georgia’s tournament resume, and shouldn’t be looked at as a tick mark against Fox’s Dawgs on Selection Sunday.

Final regular season game for the Bulldogs is on Sat. March 7 on the road at Auburn.