Live updates: Kentucky basketball vs. Texas A&M-Commerce at Rupp Arena

The Kentucky men’s basketball team faces the Texas A&M-Commerce Lions on Friday at Rupp Arena for a 7 p.m. tipoff.

The game will be streamed on SEC Network+ and ESPN+.

For updates, follow Ben Roberts at @BenRobertsHL, Mark Story at @markcstory. Cameron Drummond at @cdrummond97 and myself at @johnclayiv on Twitter/X.

You can follow a UK basketball list here.

Final: Kentucky 81, Texas A&M-Commerce 61

John Calipari’s Wildcats improve to 2-0 heading into Tuesday’s showdown with No. 1 ranked Kansas in the Champions Classic in Chicago. That’s a 9:30 p.m. start on ESPN.

Final box

Texas A&M-Commerce keeping it from a blowout

Kentucky up 66-54 with 6:18 left. Kudos to Commerce’s Kalen Williams and Tommie Lewis. Williams, a 6-foot-2 senior from Augusta, Ga., has 19 points. Lewis, a 6-2 senior from Vero Beach, Fla., has 18 points. The Lions are 9-of-19 from the field this half for 47.4 percent.

Justin Edwards showing out

Kentucky now up 61-44 with 11:11 left here at Rupp. Justin Edwards scored back-to-back baskets. First was a thunder jam. Second came off a drive. The freshman now has 14 points. Reeves is up to 18 points. UK has an 18-1 advantage in fast break points.

Kentucky stretches lead to 15 points

Kentucky stretches lead to 52-37 with 14:42 left in the game. The Lions scored on four straight possessions, but UK answered by scoring on five straight possessions. Antonio Reeves leads the Cats with 13 points, Tre Mitchell has 12 and Justin Edwards 10.

Halftime: Kentucky 38, Texas A&M-Commerce 30

After balling behind 8-0 and 19-6 early, Kentucky rallied to take a 38-30 lead into halftime. Antonio Reeves leads the way for UK with 13 points.

Halftime box

Kentucky 32-28 with 3:42 left in the half

Justin Edwards leads the Cats with eight points and four rebounds. UK is 12-of-25 shooting from the floor, including 2-of-8 from three. After a hot start, Commerce is now 10-of-23 shooting, including 5-of-13 from three-point land.

Kentucky takes a 25-24 lead

Kentucky on a 17-3 run, takes a 25-24 lead over Commerce with 7:16 left in the first half. Defensive pressure has been the difference after UK’s sleepwalk of a start. The visiting Lions have committed seven turnovers. UK has committed one. D.J. Wagner and Justin Edwards each with six points.

Texas A&M-Commerce 21-10 with 11:51 left in first half

The Lions led 19-6 with 13:26 left. Kentucky get a driving bucket from D.J. Wagner. And a Reed Sheppard steal fueled an Antonio Reeves fast break bucket, which caused Commerce to call time with 11:51 left in half. Kentucky trails 21-10.

The Lions start out roaring

Texas A&M-Commerce jumped out to an 8-0, prompting UK coach John Calipari to call timeout just 2:12 into the contest. The Lions held a 16-6 lead at the 14:32 TV time. The visitors made six of their first eight shots, including four of their six three-point attempts. The Lions’ Tommie Lewis scored the game’s first eight points.

Game officials

Officials for UK vs. Texas A&M-Commerce are Jason Baker, Patrick Evans and Bharat Ramnanan.

Kentucky’s Adou Thiero unavailable

UK says Adou Thiero is under concussion protocol and will not play against Texas A&M-Commerce. The sophomore left Monday’s win over New Mexico State complaining of a headache. He finished with seven points and five rebounds in 20 minutes.

From Cammeron Drummond: “On UK’s pregame radio show, John Calipari says Adou Thiero “has been fine,” but will be out at least tonight while in concussion protocol.”

With Thiero out, Rob Dillingham joins starters Tre Mitchell, D.J. Wagner, Justin Edwards and Antonio Reeves. Dillingham led UK with 17 points in Monday’s win.

Pre-game notes

Kentucky opened the season with an 86-46 victory over New Mexico State.

Texas A&M-Commerce is 0-2 after a 78-46 loss at Texas A&M on Monday and a 73-46 loss at Texas Tech on Wednesday.

The Lions shot 29.6 percent from the floor against Texas A&M and 29.9 percent against Texas Tech.

Kentucky shot 49.2 percent in its Monday win over New Mexico State.

In its two games, Texas A&M-Commerce has made 9 of 63 three-point shots for 14.3 percent.

Jerome Brewer, a 6-foot-9 sophomore from Camden, N.ew Jersey, was a second-team preseason All-Southland Conference selection.

Texas A&M-Commerce is coached by 36-year-old Jaret von Rosenberg, in his seventh season at the school.

The Lions were 13-20 last season, von Rosenberg’s first losing season as head coach.

The Lions were picked to finish seventh in the Southland Conference this season.

Kentucky’s six turnovers against New Mexico State matched its season-low from last season — vs. LSU and vs. South Carolina.

New Mexico State averaged 0.654 points per possession, the lowest number against UK since Eastern Kentucky averaged 0.568 on Nov. 8, 2019. UK won that game 91-49.

Kentucky’s Rob Dillingham lets out a yell after a breakaway dunk during the first half of Friday night’s game against Texas A&M-Commerce in Rupp Arena.
Kentucky’s Rob Dillingham lets out a yell after a breakaway dunk during the first half of Friday night’s game against Texas A&M-Commerce in Rupp Arena.

Kentucky basketball on Monday resembled the Cats in Canada. And that’s a good thing.

Reed Sheppard has his Kentucky teammates buzzing. Why? ‘It might be surprising to y’all.’

Orlando Antigua was once a Kentucky recruiting target. How close was he to being a Cat?

Three takeaways from Kentucky basketball’s season-opening win over New Mexico State