For the second straight week, the No. 1 team in college basketball has fallen.
The Evansville Purple Aces stunned top-ranked Kentucky 67-64 Tuesday night at Rupp Arena in Lexington. Purple Aces guard K.J. Riley led all scorers with 18 points on 4-of-8 shooting. He made all eight of his free-throw attempts from the line.
Kentucky had won 52 straight home games against non-conference, unranked teams until Evansville spoiled the fun. As No. 1, Kentucky was a perfect 39-0 all-time in that situation before Tuesday. It was also the first ever win for the Purple Aces against an AP-ranked team on the road.
It was a sloppy game for both sides, as each team failed to shoot above 40 percent. A combined 36 fouls and 27 turnovers were committed.
But the Purple Aces kept Kentucky's offense in check, holding the Wildcats to a field-goal percentage of 37.0. Kentucky only managed to shoot 4-for-17 from beyond the arc.
Evansville opened up a four-point lead at halftime and led by as many as seven points three separate times in the second half. The Purple Aces led for the final 7:15 of regulation after breaking a 53-53 tie.
Kentucky freshman Tyrese Maxey finished with 15 points, three rebounds and two steals in a losing effort. Maxey missed a potential game-tying 3-pointer from the right wing with four seconds remaining. The ball barely grazed the net, and Riley came up with the defensive rebound to seal the victory.
It was also a homecoming of sorts for Evansville head coach Walter McCarty, who played for Kentucky from 1993-96 and was part of the Wildcats' 1996 national championship team.