LEXINGTON, Ky. — Chants of "Overrated" rained down from the sold out crowd at Rupp Arena as No. 5 Kentucky took down No. 1 Tennessee on Saturday night, 86-69.
The loss snaps Tennessee's 19-game winning streak and serves as their first conference loss of the season.
PJ Washington led the Wildcats with 23 points. Keldon Johnson scored 19. Kentucky out rebounded the Vols 39-26 and blocked six shots.
"We've been telling them for two and a half weeks now that we need to rebound the ball better. We haven't, and there are good enough coaches in this league that see this type of stuff," Vols head coach Rick Barnes said. "We kept telling our guys that sooner or later it's going to bite us, and it bit us. We've been able to get through a couple games where we've been outrebounded, but we just didn't make good basketball plays."
After PJ Washington's three pointer gave Kentucky a 3-2 lead, the Wildcats stayed in front for the remainder of the first half, going into halftime up 37-31. Keldon Johnson and PJ Washington led the Wildcats with 13 points each. The Wildcats also shot 4/9 from deep.
The Vols shot no free throws and no one scored in double figures in the first half. However, Jordan Bone, Grant Williams and Admiral Schofield each scored 8 points.
The Wildcats started the second half on a 14-0 run, pushing their lead to 20 points. They led by 24 midway through the second half.
The Vols narrowed the deficit to 11 points, but never got back within single digits.
"What we wanted to do was play together as a team and not try to do things one-on-one, and we just didn't do any of that. In the first half, we didn't do the things we've done all year in terms of our offense," Barnes said.
"I don't want to take anything away from Kentucky. I thought they were terrific. I thought John (Calipari) had his team ready to play. They played great. I mean, look at those stat sheets. They dominated us in every way we could have been dominated. All we wanted to do was try to get ourselves playing together and we just didn't do that. I thought it was the most selfish that we've been all year."
Both Kyle Alexander and Admiral Schofield fouled out on Saturday. Schofield led the Vols with 17 points before recording his fifth personal foul. Jordan Bone finished with 19 points, while Grant Williams scored 16 points.
The Vols and Wildcats will meet again on March 2 at Thompson-Boling Arena.