Kentucky Wildcats Basketball

NCAA Tournament 2012 Scores: Best Overall Performances from Kentucky vs. Baylor

ATLANTA, GA - MARCH 25:  Anthony Davis #23 of the Kentucky Wildcats drives against Perry Jones III #1 of the Baylor Bears in the second half during the 2012 NCAA Men's Basketball South Regional Final at the Georgia Dome on March 25, 2012 in Atlanta, Georgia.  (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)
Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images
Bryan KalbroskyCorrespondent IMarch 25, 2012

In March Madness 2012, the Elite Eight featured a stream of close games. The exception to that rule would be Anthony Davis and Kentucky blowing Baylor out of the water. With a score of 82-70, Kentucky easily secured this victory.

John Calipari will be heading to the Final Four. After securing the No. 1 recruiting class in the nation, the Wildcats feature two dominant freshman standouts in Kidd-Gilchrist and Anthony Davis. In this season, the two dominated throughout the tournament and helped Kentucky secure a spot in 2012’s Final Four.

Baylor, which came into the tournament as a No. 3 seed, was not much of a match for Kentucky.

Baylor came into the second half down 42-22, and saw much of their titles hope slipping away before the second half even began play. While they made a brief comeback in the second half and kept the game marginally close, the damage had been done and the Bears were in too deep.

While their improbable run came to a close after easy victories against S. Dakota State, Colorado and Xavier, they were unable to hold on against an incredibly impressive Kentucky basketball team.

The game this afternoon featured some fantastic basketball performances by many of the players on the floor.

 

IMPRESSIVE PERFORMANCES 

Quincy Acy

ATLANTA, GA - MARCH 25:  Quincy Acy #4 of the Baylor Bears reacts in the first half against the Kentucky Wildcats during the 2012 NCAA Men's Basketball South Regional Final at the Georgia Dome on March 25, 2012 in Atlanta, Georgia.  (Photo by Kevin C. Cox
Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images

While the tournament might be over for Acy, no one can question the fact that he went out like a champion.

Offering 20-plus points against Kentucky is a feat in its own, but when your team is down by so much and your season’s hopes are on the line it becomes even harder. While Kentucky routed Baylor, their fans will leave remembering the name of the 6’7” senior.

Acy, who averaged only 11.8 points per game this season, also had a great game against Baylor and ended his college career in style. He was 7-of-11 from the line, perfect from the free-throw line and pulled in eight rebounds against a team that features a guy named Anthony Davis.

Not a bad performance at all.

 

Pierre Jackson

I was also very impressed with junior guard Pierre Jackson all game long.

Jackson, who is an undersized point guard from Las Vegas, was able to get a hot scoring streak going in this game. While the odds were improbable, Jackson never gave up and scored 21 points in the game. He was the team leader, and took the most shots in the game as well with 19 field-goal attempts.

Where he was off from three-point range (1-of-7 from beyond the arc), he was fantastic in distributing the ball and was the team leader in assists in this game with a total of five.

ATLANTA, GA - MARCH 25:  Pierre Jackson #55 of the Baylor Bears reacts in the second half against the Kentucky Wildcats during the 2012 NCAA Men's Basketball South Regional Final at the Georgia Dome on March 25, 2012 in Atlanta, Georgia.  (Photo by Kevin
Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images

Baylor was mildly deficient in ball distribution against Kentucky, but 33 percent of the assists came from Jackson.

Jackson also stole the ball twice in the showing.

 

Anthony Davis

Davis was the player of the game, as his rebound total (11) was as impressive as his scoring total (18).

Davis was not the scoring leader in this game (that was Kidd-Gilchrist with 19), and he was not the only player to get hot. Six Kentucky players scored eight or more points in this game, while only Baylor players can say the same.

Davis was 6-of-9 from the field, 6-of-8 from the free-throw line, and also pulled in six blocks to end the game.

While there was a slight injury scare that made Twitter explode and NBA general managers cringe in horror that involved Anthony Davis’s knees, he eventually got up and kept balling for the rest of the game.

Under Davis’s leadership, Kentucky was never ahead by less than 10 and took an early 16-0 run. With that kind of play, Kentucky could be looking at their first national championship title since 1998.

If Davis can keep up at this level of play, a title would not be improbable.

Click here to Follow @BryanKalbrosky.

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