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Monday / February 20.

Malik Monk Goes Off for 47 Points in Kentucky’s Win Over North Carolina

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Playing in front of nearly 50 NBA scouts, Kentucky freshman guard Malik Monk put on a show.

Monk went for a career-high 47 points on 18-for-28 shooting as No. 6 Kentucky held off No. 7 North Carolina, 103-100, in the CBS Sports Classic in Las Vegas. Monk’s output was also the most ever for a Kentucky freshman.

“We usually run a play for me the first play of the game,” Monk told CBS. “If I make it, I’m usually going to be on. We ran a play for me and I made it, I just knew I was going to make the rest.”

Fellow freshman De’Aaron Fox added 24 points and 10 assists while Bam Adebayo had 13 points and 7 assists.

Monk’s 3-pointer from the left wing put Kentucky up 101-100 with 17 seconds listening.

“The rim was big already,” the Arkansas native said. “My teammates set me up well with great screens and I was just able to knock down the shot. I was wide open from the screen.”

“I said drive and he shot a three. I said, ‘Good shot. Way to go kid,'” Kentucky coach John Calipari told CBS.

Justin Jackson went for 34 points, 5 rebounds and 3 assists for North Carolina, including a layup that put them up 100-98 with 43 seconds remaining.

North Carolina launched a desperation 3-point attempt at the buzzer but the ball stuck in the rim.

Joel Berry II, playing on a bad ankle, went for 23 points, 7 assists and 5 rebounds in the loss.

Monk went for 27 points in the first half when Kentucky seized a 56-51 lead.

“Well in the first half he was ridiculous,” Calipari said.

Monk is projected as the No. 5 pick by

“[Monk] is an NBA athlete that is an excellent mid range jump shooter off the bounce,” one NBA scout said. “He has become a consistent 3-point shooter. He can score at all three levels. He’s a certain lottery pick when he decides to leave school.”

Photo: ESPN

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Adam Zagoria is a New York Times contributor and Basketball Insider who covers basketball at all levels. He is the author of two books and is an award-winning journalist whose articles have appeared in ESPN The Magazine, SLAM, Sheridan Hoops, Sports Illustrated, Basketball Times and in newspapers nationwide. A veteran Ultimate Frisbee player, he has competed in numerous National and World Championships and, perhaps more importantly, his teams won the Westchester Summer League (WSL) championships in 2011 and 2013. He lives in Manhattan with his wife and children.