It wasn't the prettiest win he's ever seen, but Kentucky Coach Eddie Sutton wasn't complaining.
"We were pleased to be able to win this one, after losing two at home," Sutton said after the Wildcats defeated Louisiana State, 76-61, in a Southeastern Conference game Saturday at Baton Rogue, La. "It was a big win for us, but it wasn't a thing of beauty for either team."
Rex Chapman and Winston Bennett led a 10-3 surge over a three-minute span early in the second half that broke the game open.
Kentucky, 13-2 overall and 5-2 in the SEC, fell to second in the SEC after a home loss to Florida, 58-56, last Thursday. Kentucky's other loss at home this season was to Auburn, 53-52, Jan. 9.
LSU is 9-6 overall and 4-2 in the SEC.
Kentucky led, 33-30, when LSU's Bernard Woodside, the Tigers' best defensive player, picked up his fourth foul and had to sit down.
Woodside had been covering Bennett when LSU was in its man-to-man defense, and easing off to help on Chapman.
Bennett, who finished with 18 points, scored 6 over the next three minutes. Chapman, who also had 18 points, scored 4 during the Kentucky surge that put the Wildcats ahead, 43-33, with 14:28 to play.
LSU made only 3 of 17 shots from three-point range. Kentucky made 3 of 7.
Ed Davender led Kentucky with 21 points. Ricky Blanton led LSU with 16.
Oklahoma 86, Pittsburgh 83--Harvey Grant scored 28 points, and Mookie Blaylock made two free throws with four seconds remaining as the 11th-ranked Sooners held off the No. 6 Panthers in a nonconference game at Norman, Okla.
Pitt (13-2) rallied from a 17-point deficit in the second half to pull within 84-83 with nine seconds left on a basket by Jerome Lane.
Blaylock, who finished with 19 points, was then fouled and hit both ends of the one-and-one to provide the winning margin. Oklahoma (16-2) sealed the victory when Grant stole a pass intended for Sean Miller, who was behind the three-point line on the right wing.
Purdue (17-1) also extended the nation's longest winning streak to 16 games, which tied a school record.
Purdue grabbed its largest lead at 75-56 with 8:32 left in the game before the Cardinals had a 23-8 run that pulled them within 83-79 with 2:55 remaining. Kenny Payne scored 14 of his 16 points, making two three-pointers, during the comeback. Louisville got as close as 88-85 with 16 seconds left.
Pervis Ellison scored 20 points to lead Louisville (9-6).
Brigham Young 89, New Mexico 82--Center Jim Usevitch scored 24 points and led a strong inside game that powered the undefeated and 12th-ranked Cougars to a Western Athletic Conference victory over the Lobos at Albuquerque, N.M.
BYU, one of only two undefeated major-college teams, also got 22 points from forward Jeff Chatman and 20 from 6-10 Michael Smith to snap New Mexico's 13-game home winning streak.
The Cougars are 14-0 overall and 5-0 in the WAC. New Mexico is 15-6 and 3-3.
Texas El Paso 56, Utah 53--Chris Blocker made two free throws with nine seconds left night to seal a victory for the 18th-ranked Miners at El Paso, Tex., and give the sole possession of second place in the WAC behind BYU.
Chris Sandle led the Miners (16-3 and 5-1) with 18 points, and Blocker added 15. Mitch Smith paced the Utes with 20 points.
Colorado St. 54, Wyoming 49--Trent Shippen scored a three-pointer with two minutes left to give the Rams a three-point lead and they went on to upset the 17th-ranked Cowboys in a WAC game at Fort Collins, Colo.
Shippen's shot came after Wyoming had erased a nine-point defecit to tie the game at 47-47 with 2:43 left.
Pat Durham scored 17 points to lead the Rams (11-4 and 2-1). Wyoming is now 13-4 and 2-4.
Rivers scored 20 points in the second half as the Irish rallied from an 11-point deficit with 13:39 left in the game.
Mark Stevenson added 15 points for Notre Dame (11-4). Danny Manning scored 22 points for the Jayhawks (12-5).
Duke 103, Wake Forest 70--Danny Ferry tied a career high with 29 points, including 10 during a two-minute span to start the second half, as the ninth-ranked Blue Devils beat the Demon Deacons in an Atlantic Coast Conference game at Greensboro, N.C.
After holding an 11-point halftime lead, Duke (12-2 and 3-1) rode the hot shooting of the 6-10 Ferry to take a 57-39 lead with 17:51 remaining. Ferry made 10 of 5 shots and 7 of 7 free throws to tie his career high, set two weeks ago against Virginia.
Florida 76, Tennessee 56--Vernon Maxwell scored 18 points and became the leading scorer in Florida history as the Gators downed the Volunteers in an SEC game at Knoxville, Tenn.
Dwayne Schintzius added 17 points for Florida (14-4 and 5-1), despite sitting out nearly 15 minutes with foul trouble.
The Vols are now 10-5 and 3-3.
Missouri 119, Iowa St. 93--Derrick Chievous came off the bench to score 30 points, and Byron Irvin had 22 of his 24 in the first half as the Tigers upset the 10th-ranked Cyclones in a Big Eight game at Columbia, Mo.
The Tigers (11-4 and 1-2) built 30-point leads in the first half, making 66% of their shots from the field and outrebounding Iowa State 32-15 in the half.
Iowa State is now 16-3 and 2-1.
Illinois is 14-4 and 4-2. Northwestern is 7-9 and 2-4.
Minnesota dropped its sixth straight game and it was the 21st straight Big Ten defeat for the Gophers dating back to Jan. 5, 1987. Minnesota is now 6-5 overall but 0-5 in conference play.
Iowa (13-5), which trailed by as many as 11 points in the first half, led only 83-81 with 7:37 left, but went on a 12-4 run to open up a 95-85 lead with 3:58 to play.
Jim Barton led Dartmouth (9-4) with 27 points.
Villanova, 14-4 overall, remained on top in the Big East with a 6-1 record. Seton Hall is 12-6 and 2-4.
Seton Hall led, 59-57, with 7:10 to play, but Villanova scored 9 of the next 11 points.
St. John's 79, Connecticut 72--Greg Harvey scored 21 points and made a three-point goal with 2:05 remaining in overtime, starting an 8-0 spurt that carried the Redmen to a Big East victory over the Huskies at New York.
DePaul 95, Old Dominion 88--Rod Strickland scored 30 points, and Kevin Edwards added 29 as Blue Demons (11-4) built a 30-point second-half lead and held on to defeat the Monarchs (12-4) at Norfolk, Va.,
Baylor 84, Rice 68--Darryl Middleton scored 38 points to lead the Bears (11-7 and 2-3) to the Southwest Conference win at Waco, Tex. The 38 points is the most by a SWC player this season. Rice is 5-11 and 2-4.