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Hot-shooting Tennessee sends Ole Miss to 33-point loss

Ole Miss struggled to hold on to the ball and didn’t make many shots when it did. Tennessee didn’t have much trouble doing either one.

The combination resulted in the Rebels’ most lopsided loss of the season against one of the SEC’s hottest teams Saturday.

No. 18 Tennessee caught fire in the second half to turn a competitive game early into a 94-61 rout of Ole Miss at Thompson-Boling Arena. The Volunteers, who moved into sole possession of second place in the SEC standings, scored 59 points in the final 20 minutes to cruise to their eighth win in their last nine games.

Ole Miss (11-12, 4-6 SEC) trailed just 35-32 less than two minutes into the second half before the Volunteers (17-5, 7-3) took over, going on a quick 9-0 run to push the lead to double digits. Tennessee was just getting started as the Volunteers shot a blistering 71 percent (20 of 28) in the final 20 minutes to send Ole Miss to its fifth loss in its last six games.

The Rebels also fell to 0-7 in true road games. Ole Miss’ previous largest margin of defeat this season was a 19-point loss at Middle Tennessee State on Dec. 9.

Bruce Stevens led Ole Miss with 16 points while Terence Davis added 13 points, but the Rebels shot just 35 percent from the field on the way to their second-lowest point output against a league opponent this season. Ole Miss also committed 17 turnovers while forcing Tennessee into just six.

Grant Williams and Lamonte Turner scored 17 points apiece to lead five Tennessee players in double figures, combining to shoot 63.1 percent (12 of 19) from the field. Turner finished 5 of 6 from 3-point range.

Admiral Schofield recorded a double-double for the Volunteers with 15 points and 12 rebounds. Kyle Alexander had 14 points while Jordan Bowden added 10.

Tennessee led 35-25 at the break, holding the Rebels to their lowest first-half point total of the season.

Ole Miss will return home Tuesday to take on Missouri at The Pavilion. Tip is set for 8 p.m.