Strong second half pushes Ole Miss past Vanderbilt

Published 4:30 pm Saturday, February 4, 2017

Terence Davis scored all 17 of his points in the second half, leading Ole Miss past Vanderbilt 81-74 on Saturday at Memorial Gym. The win, Ole Miss’ fourth in its last six games, got the Rebels (14-9, 5-5) to .500 in Southeastern Conference play for the first time this season.

Davis was one of five Rebels in double figures. Deandre Burnett also had 17 points and three assists while Breein Tyree and Justas Furmanavicius scored 11 points apiece. Sebastian Saiz had 10 points and a game-high 16 rebounds for his 16th double-double of the season.

Ole Miss trailed by eight late in the first half but caught fire to explode for 54 points in the second half. The Rebels shot 55.6 percent from the floor in the final 20 minutes and made seven of its final nine 3-pointers, including one from Saiz that gave Ole Miss its biggest lead at 67-54 with 4:40 left.

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The Rebels’ defense limited the SEC’s best 3-point shooting team to just 36 percent (14 of 39) from beyond the arc. Jeff Roberson led Vanderbilt (11-12, 4-6) with 21 points while Luke Kornet and Matthew Fisher-Davis had 18 and 13 points, respectively.

Riley Lachance, the SEC’s top 3-pointer shooter coming in at 52 percent, had just five points on 2 of 6 shooting before fouling out. Vanderbilt had won three of four coming in.

Saiz helped the Rebels finish plus-8 (41-33) on the boards while Ole Miss finished with just eight turnovers for the third straight game.

Vanderbilt got within three a couple times late, but Ole Miss made four straight free throws after Kornet’s 3 with 28 seconds left. Davis shot 4 of 7 from the field after halftime and finished the second half 7 of 7 from the free-throw line as the Rebels made 72.7 percent (24 of 33) of their free throws.

Ole Miss will stay on the road Wednesday at Tennessee for a 5:30 p.m. tip.