A nonprofit publication of the Kentucky Center for Public Service Journalism

UK women’s baseball team going to Super Regionals’ second round of NCAA Tournament

By Keith Taylor Kentucky Today Kentucky is going to the Super Regionals for just the seventh time in school history.   The Wildcats punched their ticket to the second round of the NCAA Tournament with an 11-1 win over Virginia Tech in six innings Sunday at Joe Cropp Field. Kentucky (36-22) will face the winner of the Seattle Regional between Mississippi State and No. 3 seed Washington.   The Wildcats...

University of Kentucky softball to open tournament play at home for fourth consecutive year

By Keith Taylor Kentucky Today The University of Kentucky softball team will open play in the NCAA Tournament at home. The Wildcats (33-22) will host Toledo (29-26) at 2:30 p.m. Friday at Joe Cropp Stadium. It marks the fourth consecutive season Kentucky has been selected as a host sight in the opening round. The Wildcats are a No 14 seed and will open the tourney following the Illinois-Virginia Tech...

Washington’s return, Herro’s heroics lead Cat’s to victory over Houston, trip to Sunday’s Elite Eight

By Keith Taylor Kentucky Today PJ Washington returned at the right time for Kentucky. 
The sophomore All-American, who missed the first two games of the NCAA Tournament because of a strained left foot, scored 16 points as Kentucky advanced to the Midwest Regional finals with a 62-58 win over Houston Friday night at the Sprint Center. 
The Wildcats will take on Auburn (29-9) Sunday for a berth in...

Keith Taylor: Wildcats have history with Houston, defeated Cougars during early 80s glory days

Houston had it going on in the early 1980s and was a consistent national title contender. During a three-year span from 1982-84, the Cougars made three appearances in the Final Four and were national runner-up twice. Following a loss to Georgetown in the 1984 national championship game, the Cougars went into hiding and “Phi Slama Jama” became a thing of the past. Houston rarely lost during those...

Kentucky makes short work of Abilene Christian in NCAA Tournament’s first round in Jacksonville

Kentucky didn’t have its leading scorer but easily took care of business in the opening round of the NCAA Tournament Thursday night at VyStar Veterans Arena. The Wildcats (28-6) rolled to a 79-44 win over Abilene Christian and will play the winner of the Seton Hall-Wofford contest Saturday here in Jacksonville. The Pirates nipped Kentucky 84-83 at Madison Square Garden on Dec. 8 in New York City. PJ...

Kentucky freshmen eager to take national stage as Wildcats prepare to embark on road to Final Four

By Keith Taylor Kentucky Today Ashton Hagans remembers watching Kentucky play in the NCAA Tournament, especially the Wildcats’ loss to North Carolina two years ago in the South Region finals in Memphis. He also watched last year’s setback to Kansas State in the Sweet Sixteen but is ready to make his own mark in the prestigious event. “It’s a dream come true, just growing up watching this...

Cats turn focus to selection Sunday after tough loss to Tennessee in SEC tournament semi-final

By Keith Taylor Kentucky Today Kentucky won’t know its seeding for the NCAA Tournament until Sunday night but John Calipari isn’t making any early predictions regarding a possible No. 1 seed. 
“I don’t know — I mean, there’s a bunch of teams that would say it,” he said following an 82-78 loss to Tennessee in the Southeastern Conference Tournament semifinals Saturday. “I’d...

Gambling awareness, March Madness share month; NCAA Tournament largest gambling event of the year

In March, the largest gambling event of the year – the NCAA men’s basketball tournament – begins. March also is national Problem Gambling Awareness Month (PGAM). If the Kentucky General Assembly passes House Bill 175, and it is signed into law by Gov. Matt Bevin, sports betting in Kentucky will become legal. Even more betting on basketball will occur. The Kentucky Council on Problem Gambling...

Kentucky Wildcats seek to boost its NCAA resume against No. 9 North Carolina in Chicago

By Keith Taylor Kentucky Today Kentucky has yet to beat a ranked opponent this season. The Wildcats will get a chance to boost their NCAA Tournament resume against No. 9 North Carolina Saturday in the CBS Sports Classic in Chicago. In its last outing against a ranked foe, the No. 19 Wildcats (8-2) failed the test. In the worst setback of the John Calipari era, Kentucky dropped a humiliating 118-84...

Mingione, Wildcats look ahead after failing to make NCAA tournament

Kentucky will move into a new $49 million baseball stadium next season after playing at Cliff Hagan Stadium for the past 50 years. (UK Athletics Photo) By Keith Taylor Kentucky Today Kentucky baseball coach Nick Mingione thought his team did enough to earn a bid to the NCAA Tournament. The Wildcats weren’t part of a field of 64 teams that were invited to the Big Dance when bids were handed out Monday. Kentucky...

Cheek powers Kentucky past Oregon in Super Regional opener

Members of the Kentucky softball team celebrate a win over Oregon early this morning (UK Athletics Photo) The No. 16 Kentucky softball team exploded for nine runs on 10 hits against the best pitching staff in the PAC-12 to take game one of the Eugene Super Regional 9-6 over the No. 1 Oregon Ducks on Thursday night at Jane Sanders Stadium. With the Game 1 win, Kentucky is now just one game away from...

Kentucky takes on underdog role against Oregon in Super Regional

By Keith Taylor Kentucky Today Kentucky hopes to continue its postseason momentum against top-seed Oregon in the Super Regionals set for Thursday-Saturday in Eugene. The Wildcats rolled to wins over the University of Illinois-Chicago and a pair of victories over Notre Dame in the opening round of the NCAA Tournament last weekend at John Cropp Stadium in Lexington. The opener is set for 9 p.m. Thursday...

Pitching, defense a key for Kentucky softball team in NCAA Tournament

Grace Baalman will anchor the Kentucky pitching staff in this weekend’s Lexington Regional at John Cropp Stadium. (UK Athletics Photo) By Keith Taylor Kentucky Today When it comes down to it, pitching and defense win championships and Kentucky coach Rachel Lawson hopes the Wildcats have enough experience to make a serious run in the NCAA Tournament. “The postseason is about pitching and defense,”...

Keith Taylor: NCAA: Calipari enjoying the journey with maturing Wildcats

Kentucky coach John Calipari never lost faith in his team, even when the Wildcats suffered four straight losses in February. Kentucky has won five straight games in the postseason. (Kentucky Today/Keith Taylor) BOISE — John Calipari is not one to make comparisons, but his current Kentucky squad is steadily becoming one of his favorite teams. Never mind the Wildcats endured a rare four-game slide...

NCAA Tournament: Defense giving Kentucky an identity thus far in the postseason

Kentucky freshmen Hamidou Diallo, left, and Shai Gillgeous-Alexander, right, share a laugh during an open practice last week at Taco Bell Arena in Boise, Idaho. The Wildcats are having fun on both ends of the court and will continue play in the NCAA Tournament Thursday in Atlanta, Georgia. (Kentucky Today/Keith Taylor) By Keith Taylor Kentucky Today BOISE — Kentucky has finally established an identity. “Our...

No Bull: Kentucky blasts winded Buffalo to reach NCAA Sweet Sixteen

Kentucky guard Shai Gilgeous-Alexander celebrates during the Wildcats’ 95-75 win over Buffalo Saturday in Boise. The Wildcats will take on either UMBC or Kansas State in the South Region semifinals Thursday in Atlanta. (UK Athletics Photo) By Keith Taylor Kentucky Today BOISE (KT) — Kentucky is still standing and dancing in the NCAA Tournament. The Wildcats (26-10) stayed perfect in the postseason...

NCAA: Calipari, Cats seek to end Buffalo’s historic run in tourney

Kentucky coach John Calipari answers a question during a press conference Friday at Taco Bell Arena. The Wildcats take on Buffalo in the second round of the NCAA Tournament Saturday in Boise. (Kentucky Today/Keith Taylor) By Keith Taylor Kentucky Today BOISE (KT) — Buffalo made history Thursday night and Kentucky hopes to end the trend in the second round of the NCAA Tournament Saturday. The Bulls...

NCAA: Long three-point streak ends, but Cats oust Davidson in tourney opener

Kevin Knox scored 25 points to lead Kentucky to a 78-73 win over Davidson Thursday night at Taco Bell Arena in Boise. (UK Athletics Photo) By Keith Taylor Kentucky Today BOISE (KT) — The first one is out of the way. Kentucky (25-10) advanced to the second round of the NCAA Tournament with a 78-73 triumph over outmanned Davidson Thursday night, setting up a potential matchup against Arizona in the...

Jamie Vaught: March is upon us, some observations, statistics and tidbits as we head into the ‘Madness’

• It’s really hard to believe that two of UK’s best players — Kevin Knox and Shai Gilgeous-Alexander who earned first-team or second-team All-SEC honors as voted by the coaches — were left out by the Associated Press on its All-SEC teams. Weird, huh?  If my late brother-in-law, who was a head basketball coach on the high school level for a couple of years, was alive today, he would...

Kentucky State Parks offering opportunities to watch March Madness Basketball at several park locations

College basketball fans have several options to watch their favorite teams during March at Kentucky State Parks. Natural Bridge State Resort Park near Slade has Trail’s End Tavern with TV sets and a variety of beverages available. The tavern is inside Hemlock Lodge. Trail’s End Tavern at Natural Bridge State Resort Park (Photo from KAP) Jenny Wiley State Resort Park at Prestonsburg also has...