Last night, the Kentucky Wildcats finished this year’s NCAA National Tournament with a victory over the Kansas Jayhawks. Kentucky, led by the team’s freshman sensation, Anthony Davis [National Player of the Year and Final Four MVP] ended the Jayhawks’ season with the score of 67-59.
Kentucky finished the year posting a marvelous record of 38-2 and ended their amazing season with the school’s eight national title, just another championship in the books for the most “winningest” program in college basketball.
Kentucky coach, John Calipari also had something to cheer about. Not only did he once again recruit an amazing draft class, the coach who’s known to win every game finally won the most important one. Out of the four trips to the Final Four, Calipari now has his first ever-national title win.
The Kentucky Wildcats throughout this season were considered to be the best in the country. However, being the nations elite doesn’t always amount to being on top in the end. The NCAA tournament showcased just how good this year’s Wildcats were. Even more astonishing, Kentucky was able to run through teams in the tournament with three freshmen and two sophomores, all of which are expected to enter the NBA Draft in June 2012. Kentucky was that good this year.
In review of the national championship game, while Kansas did manage to come back late in the second half, Kentucky for the majority of the game controlled the tempo. Throughout the game, Kentucky seemed to always have an answer when Kansas would make a run. Doron Lamb led the Wildcats posting 22 points on 7-12 shooting. It was Lamb’s back-to-back three pointers late in the second half that really put Kansas in a deep hole.
Nonetheless, Kansas kept coming back showing tremendous resilience. The Jayhawks had many come from behind wins throughout the tournament, but being down to Kentucky 10-18 points for the most part of the game would prove to be too much for All-American junior forward, Thomas Robinson and the Jayhawks.
At the end of the day, the key to this victory was Kentucky’s defense led by who else, Anthony Davis. Davis didn’t have a good offensive night, but still dominated the game with defense. The 6’10 freshman contributed 15 rebounds and an unbelievable six blocks [tied Joakim Noah for most blocks in title game]. Davis’ defense forced Kansas to make tough shots all night and was a huge reason why Kansas could not get the game closer in the end.
The Wildcats will definitely enjoy this victory, but for Calipari, as with every year, the process begins again. Next season awaits.
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