Sessom’s 26 not enough for Rebels in loss to No. 2 South Carolina

COLUMBIA, S.C. – The Ole Miss women’s basketball team battled against the No. 2 South Carolina Gamecocks but couldn’t quite match up as they dropped an 81-62 game on Thursday night in Columbia, S.C. at Colonial Life Arena.

Shandricka Sessom led the Ole Miss offense with 26 points for her fourth consecutive game in double figures and her sixth game of 20 or more points this season. Sessom also added a team-best eight rebounds. Shequila Joseph had nine points while Cecilia Muhate Pena had a career-best eight points.

Rebounding and points in the paint were the major difference in the game, as the Gamecocks held a 45-28 edge on the glass and a 46-34 advantage in the paint. Ole Miss battled the entire night and used an 8-0 run late in the fourth quarter to cut the South Carolina lead to 14 points but the home team answered to remain undefeated on the season.

South Carolina opened the third quarter with a 6-0 run forcing Insell to call a timeout at the 8:13 mark of the third quarter to stop the momentum. Ole Miss tried to cut into the lead late in the quarter and used a 6-0 run sparked by buckets from Sessom and reigning SEC Player of the Week Shequila Joseph but the inside-out play from South Carolina’s Tiffany Mitchell and A’Ja Wilson was too much as the home team closed the quarter with six straight points.