KENTUCKY 77, TENNESSEE 72

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Kentucky guard Shai Gilgeous-Alexander, left, shoots over Tennessee's Jordan Bowden, center, during the second half of an NCAA college basketball championship game at the Southeastern Conference tournament Sunday, March 11, 2018, in St. Louis. (AP Photo/Jeff Roberson)

ST. LOUIS — Kentucky basketball fans left Scottrade Center on Sunday and walked into a snowstorm. But they didn’t mind.

As the snow fell outside, their Wildcats stayed hot. They shot 50 percent from the field  Sunday in winning the SEC Tournament for the 31st time and fourth straight, 77-72.

The Big Blue Invitational sent a message to college basketball that the rumors of Kentucky’s demise were exaggerated.

Shai Gilgeous-Alexander, a one-time Florida commit, scored 29 points to lead the Wildcats but it wasn’t easy.

Tennessee, the league co-champion, rallied from a 17-point deficit in the first half to take the lead midway through the second half. But Kentucky made a big defensive stop up three with less than a minute to play and finished off the win at the free throw line.

Admiral Schofield led Tennessee with 22 points and 10 rebounds, but the Vols only shot 37 percent from the field and missed 17 threes.