BATON ROUGE, La.
Ninth-ranked Kentucky contained LSU star Ben Simmons, only to be burned by Tim Quarterman and Craig Victor.
Quarterman had 21 points, 10 rebounds and seven assists, Victor added 15 points and 12 rebounds, and LSU defeated Kentucky 85-67 on Tuesday night.
Simmons added 14 points and 10 rebounds for the Tigers (9-5, 2-0 Southeastern Conference), who never trailed after tying the game at 2 and kept their lead at or near double digits for much of the game to the delight of a packed and energized Pete Maravich assembly Center.
Tyler Ulis had 23 points and Jamal Murray added 21 for Kentucky, (11-3, 1-1), which lost for the third time in seven games and had their 22-game SEC winning streak snapped.
The Wildcats struggled with their shooting early and later were hampered by foul trouble. Starting forwards Marcus Lee and Alex Poythress both fouled out by the time 7:29 remained in the game.
LSU led by as many as 14 points with 15:20 left after an 8-2 run that began with Quarterman’s halfcourt alley-oop lob to Simmons. Quarterman added a jumper and tip-in during the spurt before Murray, who made his first five shots of the second half, stemmed the tidebyhittinga3andthenamidrange jumper as he was fouled on successive possessions to make it 49-41.
Lee fouled out with 13 minutes left, yet the Wildcats were as close as 58-54 on Poythress’s layup with 9:36 left.
Quarterman responded with a 3, sparking another Tigers surge that included two layups by Victor as he was fouled.
Poythress then fouled out with 7:29 to go, and 2 minutes later, LSU was still up double digits when Jalyn Patterson’s baseline layup off a deep offensive rebound made it 70-59.
Kentucky looked spent in the final 4 minutes as LSU closed the game on a 14-4 run, with Simmons scoring six of his points in that spurt on a short jumper, layup and one-handed put-back jam that seemed to punctuate the victory as the crowd went wild.
LSU coach Johnny Jones brought Simmons to the bench with two fouls in the middle of the first half. Simmons then watched as his teammates picked up the slack, doubling the Tigers’ lead from seven points, at 17-10, to 14 at 36-22 when Keith Hornsby turned a steal into a fast-break dunk by Quarterman.
The Wildcats closed the half on a 5-1 run, capped by Ulis’s 3 with 5 seconds left to trim the Tigers’ lead to 37-27.
Kentucky: Kentucky shot only 32.1 percent (9 of 28) in the first half. … The Wildcats missed 11 of 23 free throws, with eight misses coming in the first half. … New Orleans Pelicans star forward Anthony Davis, who won a national title with Kentucky in 2012, attended the game, along with his parents and one of his sisters. His father wore a blue Kentucky jacket. Davis wore a dark-gray camouflage sweatsuit.
LSU: Patterson, who hadn’t scored since Dec. 2 after sitting out five of the previous six games with an unspecified leg injury, scored all of his six points in the final 7:29, including a contested driving floater off the glass to make it 73- 63 with 3:36 left. … LSU scored 22 points off 14 Kentucky turnovers. … Sophomore Aaron Epps entered the game with four made 3-pointers in his career and hit two in the first half.
Kentucky: Visits Alabama on Saturday. LSU: Visits Florida on Saturday.