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Lady Dogs lose to unranked foe
Former Gainesville High standout and current Georgia center Tasha Humphrey, left, edges past Kentucky’s Victoria Dunlap Thursday during the first half in Athens.
ATHENS — After starting the season with 13 straight wins, No. 17 Georgia is in danger of falling out of contention in the Southeastern Conference.

The Lady Dogs (16-5, 3-3 SEC) Thursday suffered their fourth loss in their last six games, 47-44 to Kentucky, which got 12 points from Amber Smith, including two decisive free throws with 5.6 seconds to play.

"I am real, real appreciative of the effort," said Kentucky (11-10, 5-2 SEC) coach Matthew Mitchell. "It was not pretty, but it was one of the gutsiest performances I have been a part of. This is a really big win for our program."

As Georgia coach Andy Landers started his post-game press conference, he called to Tasha Humphrey and Megan Darrah to come closer.

"We don’t fight," Landers said. "I have a hard time correcting mistakes. Quite honestly ... our accountability is not real great. All that is my fault. I have to figure out how to get that straight. But we don’t like to be accountable. We will call mama, call daddy, we’ll call you if we think we can get you to agree with me on a bad idea."

Humphrey, who scored 20 points in defeat, said simply, "He’s right. What can I say? He is right," she said. "We have to step up and be accountable for our actions."

Darrah had a game-high 10 rebounds, but her last pass with less than 10 seconds to play was intercepted, robbing the Lady Bulldogs of a chance to close the 3-point spread Kentucky (11-10, 5-2 SEC) had at the time.

"It’s tough to lose a game like this and hear it all over again," she said. "We have to do better. He is right. We don’t have accountability. I don’t know how to change that. You have to have leaders, but you have to have followers too, people who want to follow."

Georgia led 27-20 at halftime after falling behind 8-1 early. Darrah’s two 3-pointers in the final minute of the half provided the Lady Bulldogs’ halftime margin.

Georgia’s biggest spread was nine points at 36-27 after Humphrey scored on a short jumper with 13:02 to play.

The Wildcats caught up at 38-38 when Sarah Elliott scored on a layup with 4:33 remaining.

Georgia’s last lead came when Humphrey hit two free throws with 3:45 to play to make it 40-38. But Smith answered with a layup, and Victoria Dunlap went back door to put the Cats up 42-40 with 2:27 remaining.

Darrah hit two free throws to tie the game with 2:02 to go, but Samantha Mahoney’s 3-pointer with 1:55 to play gave Kentucky the lead for good. Mitchell called it "one of the prettiest threes I have ever seen."

Georgia forced a turnover with 17.6 seconds to play, but wasted it when Darrah’s cross-court pass was intercepted, setting up Smith for her decisive free throws.

The win was the first for Kentucky in Athens since 1994. The Lady Dogs also were 11-0 at home this year.

Georgia shot 28 percent from the field for the game.

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