The Ole Miss Rebels men’s basketball team (9-8, 1-4 SEC) hosted the Missouri Tigers (8-9, 2-3 SEC) Tuesday only to be swallowed by the Southeastern Conference opponent 78-53. The Tigers left the Rebels bleeding cardinal red.
The home team fought till the very end in an all-out attempt to defend The Sandy and John Black Pavilion in Oxford, Mississippi. The in-conference opponents were neck and neck early. However, the Rebels found themselves trailing by 15 at the half.
Ole Miss head coach Kermit Davis said he gives the Tigers major credit.
“We just got beat in every facet of the game, as you saw,” Davis said. “They made good shots, they drove the ball, put us on our heels, and then our inability to just score it around the goal. Give Missouri all the credit.”
The Rebels shot 34.4% from the field and 27.3% from the 3-point line to add to their less-than-perfect night. Freshman guard Daeshun Ruffin finished with 12 points, just over half the amount Missouri’s leading scorer claimed. The hometown hero’s effort failed to aid the cardinal red and navy blue enough.
The Tigers second-half performance throttled them to the finish line and put an exclamation point on their 25-point road victory.
Led by junior guard Amari Davis, Missouri made history. The margin of victory is the largest since March 6, 2019, and the third-largest since the black and gold joined the SEC. Davis is the first player in the conference to go 10-0f-10 and perfect at the line since 2012.
The Trotwood, Ohio, native tied a program record with his lights-out performance. With 23 points on the night, he notched his 17th career 20+-point game.
“Play to the end,” said Tigers head coach Cuonzo Martin. “It’s not over till the buzzer.”
Missouri travels to Alabama for its second-straight road game Saturday with hopes to beat reigning SEC champions once more. The Rebels will also see action Saturday, as they face the Missippi State Bulldogs down the road in Starkville, Mississippi.