A nonprofit publication of the Kentucky Center for Public Service Journalism

Jamie Vaught: Kentucky Miss Basketball frontrunner Blair Green to follow in mother’s footsteps at UK

Blair Green is following her mother’s footsteps to Lexington. That’s where the Harlan County High School basketball star will be playing next season as she’ll be taking the hardwood floor as a freshman for coach Matthew Mitchell’s Kentucky Wildcats. Just like her current Harlan County girls’ head coach and mother, Debbie Hoskins Green, who played for UK women’s team – then called the...

Let the Madness Begin: Tickets for annual tipoff to new Wildcats’ basketball season on sale Sept. 29

Tickets for the 2017 edition of Big Blue Madness in Rupp Arena will be available Friday, Sept. 29, at 10 p.m. at the Memorial Coliseum ticket windows on Avenue of Champions and online at Ticketmaster.com. Big Blue Madness, the first open practice opportunity for UK’s 2017-18 men’s and women’s basketball teams, is Oct. 13 at 7 p.m. Tickets are free again this year for the annual spectacle in...

UK women’s assistant coach Elzy presents $40,000 to Summitt Foundation for Alzheimer’s research

University of Kentucky women’s basketball associate head coach Kyra Elzy and her husband Dexter Lander in conjunction with head coach Matthew Mitchell and his wife Jenna, presented a $40,000 check to The Pat Summitt Foundation on Monday as a result of the 2016-17 SEC Win Challenge. The SEC Win Challenge raises funds to support the foundation’s work with the 2016-17 challenge expanding to include...

Akhator, Epps make UK Hoops history; both are selections in early rounds of WNBA Draft

By Kindsey Bernhard KyForward intern With the conclusion of their basketball careers at the University of Kentucky, Evelyn Akhator and Makayla Epps turned their focus to preparing for the 2017 WNBA Draft. And Thursday night, Akhator was the third pick of the draft, taken by the Dallas Wings of the Western Conference. Epps was drafted 33rd overall, the ninth pick in the third round. She was taken...

UK’s Monk named Wooden All-American; Epps, Akhator selected for AP honorable mention squad

Kentucky men’s basketball freshman guard Malik Monk was named a Wooden All-American on Monday by the Los Angeles Athletic Club after leading the Wildcats to Southeastern Conference regular-season and tournament championships as well as a memorable run to the Elite Eight. Monk, who was one of 15 finalists for the John R. Wooden Award, was one of 10 players on the Wooden All-American Team. He joined...

Jamie Vaught: UK Hoops season comes to a sudden, emotional end for seniors Epps, Akhator

After Kentucky women lost to Ohio State in the second round of the NCAA tournament in Lexington, finishing its remarkable campaign with a 22-11 mark after last year’s turmoil involving several player departures, it sure was a very emotional time for two Wildcat senior stars Makayla Epps and Evelyn Akhator. Even some reporters at last Sunday’s postgame press conference, including yours truly, were...

Seniors Epps, Akhator come to end of the line as Cats fall to Buckeyes in NCAA tournament

Fourth-seeded Kentucky rallied from a 19-point second half deficit to within one point of the lead, but the Wildcats could not overcome fifth-seeded Ohio State’s advantage, as the Buckeyes won 82-68 on Sunday afternoon at Memorial Coliseum. It was a 33-15 run over 13 minutes that allowed Kentucky to methodically cut into the Ohio State lead. But Ohio State ended the game on a 17-4 run to put it away. Kentucky...

Jamie Vaught: Cool customer at the FT line, sophomore Morris saves Cats’ life in tourney

Some leftovers from Kentucky women’s NCAA hoops tournament this weekend in Lexington…. — UK heralded seniors Makayla Epps and Evelyn Akhator were the dominating stars as they gunned in a combined 52 points – which is 71.2 percent of the total team scoring – in leading the Wildcats to a 73-70 win over a pesky Belmont squad Friday afternoon at historic Memorial Coliseum. Akhator also...

Epps, Akhator combine for 52 points, lead Wildcats past Belmont, into second round of NCAA tourney

Makayla Epps scored 30 points and Evelyn Akhator added 22 points and 10 rebounds as fourth-seeded Kentucky held off a determined Belmont squad 73-70 on Friday afternoon in the first round of the NCAA Women’s Basketball Tournament at Memorial Coliseum. Kentucky trailed 36-35 at halftime, but the Wildcats opened the second half with a 13-0 run, which gave them a lead they would never relinquish. Friday’s...

Belmont the first obstacle for Mitchell’s Wildcats as NCAA tourney opens at Memorial Coliseum

After earning its school-record eighth straight appearance in the Big Dance, the No. 18 University of Kentucky women’s basketball team will begin play in the 2017 NCAA Tournament on Friday at Noon ET by hosting 13th-seeded Belmont in the first round inside historic Memorial Coliseum. First-round action in Lexington starts Friday with Kentucky-Belmont before fifth-seeded Ohio State battles 12th-seeded...

Jamie Vaught: Lots of Bluegrass color in NCAA Big Dance field beyond just UK and UofL

There are lots of representatives from the state of Kentucky in the Big Dance beyond just UK and U of L. As you know, Northern Kentucky, which was just granted full NCAA Division I status last August, has earned its first NCAA Division I tourney berth for winning the Horizon League Tournament in Detroit last week. And the No. 15 seed Norse (24-10) will face No. 2 seed Kentucky in the South Region...

UK’s Epps unanimous selection to AP All-SEC first team; Akhator also grabs another honor

University of Kentucky women’s basketball seniors Makayla Epps and Evelyn Akhator continue to add to their lengthy list of postseason honors as both were named All-Southeastern Conference performers by The Associated Press on Wednesday. Epps was a unanimous selection to the first team, while Akhator was named to the second team. Both players were named first team All-SEC by league coaches last week...

No. 20 Wildcat women’s upset bid against fifth-ranked South Carolina come up short in tourney loss

Playing without point guard Taylor Murray, the 20th-ranked Kentucky Wildcats fought hard, but fell to No. 5 South Carolina 89-77 on Saturday afternoon in the semifinals of the SEC Women’s Basketball Tournament. Murray was injured late in Friday’s quarterfinal win over Alabama. She missed Saturday’s game with whiplash and is considered day-to-day. This was the second game between the two teams...

Akhator, Rice lead UK Hoops in win over Alabama in quarterfinals of SEC tournament

By Kindsey Bernhard KyForward intern UK Hoops defeated Alabama in UK’s opening game of the SEC Tournament 65-55 on Friday afternoon in Bon Secours Wellness Arena to advance to the semifinals. UK advances to the semifinal of the Southeastern Conference Tournament for the eighth straight year. The Wildcats will play South Carolina, the tournament’s top seed, at 5 p.m. Saturday in the semifinals....

Jamie Vaught: Keyed by talented seniors Epps, Akhator, UK women enjoying a season to remember

When you reflect about the current version of UK women’s basketball team, you’d think about its two senior stars – 5-10 guard Makayla Epps and 6-3 forward Evelyn Akhator. And these two Sporting News pre-season All-Americans and All-SEC performers won’t be around much longer so enjoy while you can during the post-season tournament action. The duo of Epps and Akhator, along with its strong supporting...

Wildcats’ Epps, Akhator land first-team honors on All-Southeastern Conference squad

University of Kentucky women’s basketball senior guard Makayla Epps and senior forward Evelyn Akhator have been named All-Southeastern Conference First Team performers by league coaches, it was announced Tuesday. Epps and Akhator are joined on the first team by Ronni Williams (Florida), Victoria Vivians (Mississippi State), Sophie Cunningham (Missouri), Alaina Coates (South Carolina), A’ja Wilson...

Following double bye, UK women open quest for SEC Tournament Championship Friday

By Kindsey Bernhard KyForward intern The UK women’s basketball team will begin the quest for the conference tournament crown Friday afternoon in Greenville, South Carolina. The Wildcats finished 11-5 in the Southeastern Conference with a 95-87 loss to seventh-ranked South Carolina in Columbia on Sunday. That marked UK’s most conference wins since the 2012-13 season and netted the team a bye for...

Senior Day Surprise: Epps, Akhator key No. 22 UK Hoops to upset of No. 3 Mississippi State

By Kindsey Bernhard KyForward intern UK Hoops honored seniors Makayla Epps and Evelyn Akhator in the best way possible in their final regular season game in Memorial Coliseum. Kentucky upset third-ranked Mississippi State 78-75 in overtime Thursday night. UK has won eight straight games on Senior Night “I think for me, the best feeling is that Makayla and Evelyn will always have tonight,” coach...

Wildcat women ring up fourth straight SEC win, top Florida in annual Play4Kay Pink Game

By Kindsey Bernhard KyForward intern UK Hoops is riding a four-game Southeastern Conference winning streak after defeating the Florida Gators 57-48 in UK’s annual Play4Kay Pink Game on Sunday afternoon in Memorial Coliseum. The Play4Kay Pink Game honors North Carolina Sate head coach Kay Yow, who battled and lost her life to breast cancer. During the final stages of her battle with cancer, Coach...

Veteran Hall of Fame coach Lin Dunn thinks UK women’s basketball is on the right track

By Kindsey Bernhard KyForward Intern The University of Kentucky women’s basketball team is nearing the final games of its season and sits fourth in the SEC standings, one game behind Texas A&M and one game ahead of both Missouri and Tennessee. Lin Dunn, a Hall of Fame coach who came out of retirement to serve as a UK assistant coach this season, is “very optimistic” about the progress the...