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12/08/2012 6:26 PM EST
Kentucky tops Portland 74-46
KENTUCKY 74, PORTLAND 46

LEXINGTON, Ky. (AP) -- John Calipari saw flashes of what he wants
from Ryan Harrow. The Kentucky coach hopes to hear more from the
point guard, too.



Harrow posted season bests across the board Saturday as the
defending national champions beat Portland 74-46 Saturday.



The Wildcats (6-3) won their second in a row following a series
of losses that dropped them out of The Associated Press' Top 25
poll for the first time under Calipari.



Harrow, a sophomore transfer from North Carolina State, had
eight points, six assists and four rebounds in 25 minutes. His
first season at Kentucky had gotten off to a shaky start when
flulike symptoms and an undisclosed family issue forced him to
miss four straight games.



"I liked it," Calipari said. "He had two lapses of his old self.
I absolutely jerked him out of the game because he's not playing
that way."



"The other parts of the game, I thought he did fine. Got to run
the team a little better, like yelling out what we're doing. But
he was good. It was great to see. I'm happy for him," he said.



Calipari is certain he needs a confident, poised point guard to
win, and is counting on Harrow.



Harrow confirmed Calipari's notion that he must be more vocal
for Kentucky's success. Because of his high-pitched, nasal
voice, that may require a bit of extra work, Harrow said.



"When I need to run something, I've got to be a little more
vocal," Harrow said. "I feel like I'm yelling, but my yelling is
like regular people's talking. I guess I've got to scream until
I go hoarse."



Harrow said he's still adjusting to a few things, among which
was playing defense for every second the way Calipari expects.
As the season progresses and Kentucky's half-court offense
develops under Harrow, he said he'll have a more clear picture
of when he should shoot and when he should yield to his
teammates.



Alex Poythress and Archie Goodwin each scored 15 points for
Kentucky. Julius Mays added 13 points and Kyle Wiltjer had 12.



Wiltjer had struggled in Kentucky's last five games, shooting 4
of 27 from 3-point range. He countered his slump with a
different approach against the Pilots, opting for
higher-percentage shots. He went 5 of 8 from the field and 1 of
3 from behind the arc.



Ryan Nicholas finished with 15 points and 13 rebounds for
Portland.



The Pilots (3-6) held court at Rupp Arena early in the first
half, tied at 10 nearly nine minutes into the game. But
Poythress scored two quick baskets to spark a 16-0 Kentucky run.



Portland closed the gap to 10 points early in the second half,
but the Wildcats followed with a 9-0 run to help seal the game.



"I don't feel like we did a good job of putting pressure on them
all the time to exploit some mistakes that freshmen players will
make," Portland coach Eric Reveno said. "Whether it's a certain
action you're running, or a certain matchup you recognize that
you have a good opportunity to put a good player in a good
position, I'm not sure we did a good job. That is on our
coaches, not our players in terms of executing offense."



Kentucky freshman center Nerlens Noel sustained a left leg
injury and limped around in pregame warmups, but played 32
minutes. He finished with seven points, nine rebounds and seven
blocks. The seven blocked shots were the most in a game for a
Kentucky player this season.

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