Ole Miss earns 20th victory in road clash at Missouri

Ole Miss earns 20th victory in road clash at Missouri

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Ole Miss Athletics

COLUMBIA, Mo. – A second-half comeback attempt by their opponents was denied as the Ole Miss men’s basketball team picked up their 20th win of the season in an 84-78 road victory on Saturday night in Mizzou Arena.

A dunk by Moussa Cisse followed by a steal-and-score by Matthew Murrell put Ole Miss (20-9, 7-9 SEC) up 5-2 early. The two team’s traded blows for the next few minutes, before the Rebels began to pull away. Starting off with a 14-2 run to go up 27-17 and force a timeout by Missouri (8-21, 0-16 SEC), Ole Miss stretched it even further to a run of 22-3 to go up 35-18 at the under-four-minute media timeout.

The Rebels defense held the Tigers to 26 points in the first half behind five blocks from Jamarion Sharp, leading by a score of 45-26 at the break.

Early in the second period, Murrell’s fourth make from beyond the arc gave Ole Miss a 49-30 advantage with 18 minutes on the clock. However, Missouri cut the Rebels lead to seven with four minutes left to play by way of an 8-0 run. A pair of makes from the charity stripe by TJ Caldwell made it a 73-65 game with three minutes on the board.

A two-point game with just under two minutes to go, Caldwell was sent back to the free throw line, going 1-2 to set the score at 74-71. Jaemyn Brakefield would use a flurry of moves to find the basket on the next possession for Ole Miss to put the Rebels up five.

Murrell secured his ninth 20-point game of the season with two free throws, giving Ole Miss the cushion they needed to lock up the win.

Behind 21 points, Murrell connected on five shots from beyond the arc, giving him 214 in his career at Ole Miss to tie him with Joe Harvell for fifth-most in program history. Brakefield added 19 points on the evening by getting to the free throw line effectively, sinking 10 in a game for the second time this season.

Jaylen Murray scored 16 on the evening behind four makes from three.

On the defensive end, Sharp finished with six blocked shots, tying him with Aaron Jones in 2013-14 and Reginald Buckner in 2013-14 for the third-most in a single season at Ole Miss with 69. He also climbed the all-time NCAA blocks leaderboard, moving from 60th to 55th.

Missouri was led by Sean East II with 27 points, going 10-12 shooting from the floor.

Up next for the Rebels is their final regular season road game, as they take a quick turnaround and travel to Athens to face Georgia on Tuesday, March 5 at 6 p.m. on the SEC Network.

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