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Hoops: Ole Miss rallies to take down Mississippi State

Mississippi State vs. Ole Miss. Photo courtesy of Telesouth Communications Inc.

Mississippi State came into today’s game with a 13-1 record, but Ole Miss was able to win the day. The Rebels rallied to pick up their 9th win of the season in the in-state rivalry matchup thanks in large part to a 10-0 run late in the second half. Despite trailing by as many as 13, the Rebels defended their home court with a 64-58 victory,

The run began with the Rebels trailed by 9 with 7:40 remaining in the game, and then the Bulldog offense went cold until the 4:27 mark. Neither team shot the ball effectively throughout the game; Ole Miss shot 33.9 % while the Bulldogs finished slightly higher with 34.9 %.

The shooting woes began with Ole Miss’ leading scorer Terrence Davis, who finished with just 2 points on 1-13 shooting. There to pick up the slack was G Deandre Burnett and PG Breein Tyree. Burnett had 21 points to lead all scorers, and Tyree had 16 points (all in the second half). Tyree hit a clutch 3 and a game-tying layup with 5 minutes to play in the second half, followed by a layup that all but sealed the game for the Rebels at 62-58.

For the Bulldogs, their leading scorer never found his rhythm. Qunnidary Weatherspoon had 22 points in the win over #22 Arkansas, but couldn’t only muster 7 points in Oxford. As a team, the Bulldogs went 0 of 13 from 3-point range in the second half, and the squad struggled to score when Ole Miss switched to their zone defense during the Rebels’ run.

“The 1-3-1 changed the game for us,” Rebel head coach Andy Kennedy told ESPN after the game. “They were getting downhill on us; they’re very athletic, they’re good off the bounce. We were able to stay in front of them a little bit in the zone, force some jump shots, and we were able to get enough rebounds to help us get out of here.”

With noticeable room to improve for both sides, Kennedy was pleased that his team walks away with the win, but knew that it wasn’t pretty.

“It wasn’t the most aesthetically pleasing game in the history of basketball…we made gusty plays down the stretch,” Kennedy said.

As of late, Ole Miss has dominated the on-court rivalry with the Bulldogs winning 8 of the last 9 games.

The Bulldogs (13-2, 1-1) will now travel to take on the Florida Gators next Wednesday.

Ole Miss (9-6, 2-1) faces Auburn on the road next Tuesday.

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