The University of Kentucky women’s basketball team will take one final step before officially starting its 45th season of varsity basketball on Friday when it plays host to Lincoln Memorial University for an exhibition contest at 7 p.m. ET inside Memorial Coliseum. 

The game will not be televised but will be broadcast on the UK Sports Radio Network with Darren Headrick, now in his second year with the program, calling the action. Fans in Lexington can hear Headrick’s call on 98.5 FM, while fans in Louisville can hear the call on 1080 AM. Live stats and free audio will be available online atukathletics.com.

Although admission to Friday’s game is free, the UK Ticket Office will be open before the game and until halftime for fans wishing to purchase season tickets or single-game tickets to any of UK’s home games this season. Purchasing season tickets offers the best option and price savings for fans. New season ticket purchases are available in upper-level reserved chairbacks (sections AA-JJ), lower-level reserved bleachers (sections R-Z) or general admission bleachers (sections RR-ZZ) for $69 per ticket. Lower-level reserved chairbacks (A-J) sections are sold out again this season.

Single-game tickets are $10 (all ages) in reserved seating areas, while general admission tickets are $8 for adults and $5 for children (ages 6-18) and seniors (age 65+). Children ages five and under do not require a ticket in general admission areas.

A massive new LED video board spanning approximately 1,800 square feet with dimensions of 30 feet by 60 feet has been installed in Memorial Coliseum including a new LED ribbon board nearly 100 feet in width. Both the video and ribbon boards feature a 5.2 mm display with a 4800-hertz refresh rate.

Spectator parking is located in all E-lots surrounding Memorial Coliseum and are off control 3 hours prior to tip. Additionally, the South Limestone Garage (PS#5) and the Rose Street Garage (PS#2) are available 2 hours prior to tip. With the Gatton Student Center lot and expansion of North Craft lot there are 238 additional parking spots for spectators this season around Memorial Coliseum. The Bill Gatton Student Center is available as a pay-to-park option. Availability is based on the Gatton Student Center Event Schedule.

The Lexington Parking Authority Transit Center Parking Garage, located between High Street and Vine Street is available for parking after 5 p.m. during the week and all day on the weekends. Additionally, a free shuttle service will pick up in the High Street lot beginning 2 hours prior to tip. UK Athletics Event Staff will be at the Transit Center Garage Entrance to assist with directing patrons to the correct shuttle pick-up location.

Parking is prohibited in any R (Residential) lots. Vehicles parking in R lots without a proper permit, along yellow curbs, grass spaces, or other non-specified and unapproved areas may be subject to ticket and/or tow. Disabled spectator parking is available with a valid, state issues disabled hangtag in the E lot North of the Craft Center. These spaces are available on a first-come, first-served basis until full.

Shuttles are available beginning 2 hours prior to tip off and pick up and drop off near the South Limestone Garage (PS#5) and near the Transit Center Parking Garage and High Street Lot. Shuttles will start back up after halftime to return guests to their parking areas, the shuttle will discontinue service 1-hour post-game.

Doors to Memorial Coliseum open 1.5 hours before tip and UK Athletics encourages women’s basketball fans to arrive early to ease traffic and parking congestion around the Coliseum. For more information on parking around Memorial Coliseum and other game-day questions visit ukathletics.com.

Matthew Mitchell is entering his 12th year at Kentucky as the winningest head coach in program history. His Wildcats return a majority of their team from last season, including its top scorers in senior guards Maci Morris and Taylor Murray. In all, UK returns 10 of the 13 players that saw time last season, not including redshirt junior Ogechi Anyagaligbo, who missed last season due to injury.

In all, UK returns 81 percent of its scoring, 80 percent of its assists, 74 percent of its rebounding, 75 percent of its 3-point shooting and 80 percent of its made field goals. Morris and Murray lead the returners after Morris averaged 17.3 points last season while Murray averaged 11.5 points.

Morris and Murray have been recognized by league coaches as two of the top performers in the Southeastern Conference this preseason as both were named to the 2018-19 Preseason All-SEC Team.  Morris was tabbed to the first team after being named to the second team last season. Murray earned second-team honors for the second straight year after being on the SEC All-Defensive team last season. The Wildcats were picked to finish seventh in the league.

Lincoln Memorial enters the 2018-19 season ranked 10th in the Southeast Region D2SIDA Preseason Media Regional Poll and were picked to finish fifth in the South Atlantic Conference preseason poll.

LMU finished the 2017-18 season at 18-11 and 12-8 in SAC play. The Railsplitters lost three key seniors from last year in Shea Coker, Ross Mathis and Karsen Sims but do return 12 contributors and two red-shirt players.

Top returners include twin sisters Rachel and Emily Griffith, who finished second and third on the team in scoring last season at 10.6 points and 10.1 points per game, respectively. Also returning is SAC Freshman of the Year Qua Hines, who averaged 8.9 points and 3.9 rebounds last season.

For more information on the Kentucky women’s basketball team, visit UKathletics.com or follow @KentuckyWBB on Twitter, Instagram and Snapchat, or Kentucky Women’s Basketball on Facebook.

‑ GO CATS –
For more information contact:
Evan Crane; wesley.crane@uky.edu; (859) 257-8431

Cami Moore; camiran.moore@uky.edu; (859) 257-8431

Kentucky Women’s Basketball Pregame Quotes

Kentucky vs. LMU

Memorial Coliseum – Lexington, Ky.

Nov. 1, 2018

Kentucky Head Coach Matthew Mitchell

Opening statement…

“This is a really special time of the year and it’s always special to be able to go out in Memorial Coliseum and compete, and we’re looking forward to that opportunity. It’s a good one for us. The team is working hard right now in practice. We’re just trying to approach every day with a lot of positive energy and trying to build our defensive, and also our offensive, strategy. There is a lot to get done this time of the year and so everybody is coming in and working really hard every day and working in a positive way for improvement, and so that’s what tomorrow night will be all about.”

On adjusting to the new video board…

“It’s very possible. You know, we don’t know. We haven’t had it turned on and we haven’t played a game in there yet, so it’s possible. I’m just hoping for not a lot of close-ups of me on there. It can get real strange. So, I don’t know. It looked great. We’re really excited about it and the quality of it should really enhance the fans experience this year. You know, it’s the first step of our master plan there to renovate Memorial Coliseum. So, we’ll see. But, it’ll be different.”

On how good the team can be this season…

“You know, we’re very optimistic about the character our players have and very optimistic about their talent. We have to do it as a team. There may be a handful of teams that can show up in the country and just blow somebody’s doors off because of their talent, and we’re not viewing ourselves in that way, but we are viewing ourselves as a championship-level team because I think it is important for you to do that. Somebody’s got to do it, and so we’re just trying to go in with that type of preparation every day. And then, we aspire to that and hold ourselves to that type of standard as far as preparation goes and execution goes and then you can try and find out what your ceiling is. But, we do have some athleticism. We have some explosive ability to spread the floor and get to the basket, and our 3-point shooting is good in the preseason, during practice. So, we’ll see how that shows up, but I think right now we have to stay extremely positive and very patient as we bring this team along. But, I’m excited about our team and we will find out soon enough, but we all have very high expectations of each other and what we can accomplish this year.”

On the team may look in a game setting…

“Well, the No. 1 thing is our effort and our energy tomorrow night. There are so many things that we need to get better and improve upon as a basketball team, and we are not going to get that all fixed today in practice, and we’re not going to get it fixed tomorrow night. But, what we have been working very hard on since June, in Italy and now coming here and preparing for the season, is the mentality and how people are able to view us and how our intensity and toughness and grit and defensive spirit – how does that present itself to people just observing? We want it to be a high-energy game tomorrow night. We want to hustle for each other and that’s the No. 1 goal. We’d like to see how our full-court press looks in a game situation where there are people in the building, and referees are here and there’s a lot of corrections we need to make there, but I like their mentality as we develop that. And, that requires a lot of patience and so I’d like to see some progress there. And then, we’ve been working hard on just being a good spread-the-floor, motion offensive team. That’s new for us and we’d like to see some progress there. So, I’d say those are the three goals for tomorrow night because we’ve been spending most of our time on those three things, and you want to see some progress in those areas.

On the amount of time it will take to get press back to comfortable level…

“You know, it just depends on… it’s team-to-team, but we’ve had teams that it took till late-December before we really entered into conference play. So, what we’re trying to do every day on that is just being really great teachers – teach, let them play. A lot of it, you have to start getting a feel for it and I do think we are in the neighborhood of having the right mentality. It’s not where it totally needs to be, but we have a chance. You’ll see some bad plays. We’ll make some mistakes. But, if we just keep hustling we’ll make some disruptive plays. We’ve seen that. So, you can’t get too down when a play looks bad, and you can’t get too high when a play looks good. The reality is somewhere in between. So, I don’t have a clear answer for you there. But, we’ll just keep every single day trying to improve.”

On “The Love of Basketball”…

“I had a front-row seat for a lot of it, when all of it was happening. I can tell you, it was a transformative time for women’s college basketball and Coach Summitt and Geno, that rivalry did a whole lot for our sport. I can tell you that.”

         Evan Crane 
Associate Director of Athletics Communications and Public Relations
Women’s Basketball and Football 

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