Ruffin, Brooks lead Ole Miss to 76-68 win over Dayton

Published 10:52 am Monday, December 20, 2021

Daeshun Ruffin scored 19 points, Nysier Brooks added 16 points and 11 rebounds and the two dominated the final minutes in Mississippi’s 76-68 victory over Dayton on Saturday night.

Ruffin and Brooks scored all but three of the Rebels’ last 24 points, holding off Dayton’s rally from a 10-point halftime deficit. At one point in that final stretch, Ruffin scored nine consecutive Ole Miss points in a 13-4 run that gave the Rebels a 65-51 lead with just under five minutes remaining in the game.

Brooks made 8 of 12 from the field and Ruffin hit on 9 of 12 free throws. Jarkel Joiner added 12 points for the Rebels (8-3).

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Malachi Smith had 16 points and 11 assists for Dayton (7-5). Toumani Camara had 15 points and nine rebounds. DaRon Holmes scored 14 points.

Ole Miss had a strong finish to the first half, outscoring Dayton 11-4 in the final three minutes to take a 34-24 lead at halftime. Dayton chipped away in the second half but never drew closer than five points before Ole Miss pulled away.

Mississippi celebrated the 100th game at SJB Pavilion which opened in 2016. It was Ole Miss’s ninth consecutive home victory, the Rebels’ most at SJB Pavilion.

Mississippi defeated Dayton for the first time. The Flyers won all seven prior meetings, dating to 1980.