Tomasz Gielo answered the call.
Gielo, a one-year graduate transfer from Liberty, totaled 13 points and a season-high six rebounds in 24 minutes to lift the Rebels (4-2) to a 68-59 win over Georgia State (2-1). Ole Miss led for all but one minute in the game.
“Obviously when you go through a shooting slump,” Gielo said, “all you want to do is see the ball go through the net.”
Gielo entered the game shooting 29.6 percent from the floor (8 of 27) and 25 percent from 3 (3-12). He made three of his first four field goal attempts in the win, including all three of his 3s for 11 first-half points. He scored just two points in the second half after fouling out in eight minutes.
Gielo credited extra work put in outside of practice for his success. Ole Miss was 1-2 in the Gildan Charleston (S.C.) Classic last week, capped by a 12-point loss to Seton Hall on Sunday in which Gielo scored 15 points.
He said he went to work during the team’s off-day with Rebel assistant coach Todd Abernethy in an effort to improve his offense.
“Got a lot of shots up,” he said. “It was just about getting the ball to go through the net. Today the shots were falling. It definitely feels good and gives you a boost of confidence.”
Ole Miss shot 47.7 percent (21-44) from the field for the game and 37.5 percent from 3 (6-16). The Rebels out-rebounded Georgia State 39-20. Stefan Moody led the team with 21 points. He notched five rebounds, five assists and three steals as well.
The Rebels return to action Nov. 28 at Bradley.
“Tomasz is the one guy who’s really played good the last two games,” head coach Andy Kennedy said. “I think he’s probably our best ball-mover, and a guy that can make plays for other people. He was really the one giving us great offensive lift, finding holes and trying to take some pressure off of Moody.”
Kennedy used a starting five of Moody, Rasheed Brooks, Gielo, Anthony Perez and Sebastian Saiz. He said the change was made to help the Rebels' rebounding after an ugly showing in last week’s loss to George Mason. “We did it because we just got crushed on the glass. George Mason crushed us. Every other game we’ve either won it or have been competitive. They crushed us.” … Expect to see Moody running the team for the foreseeable future, especially with Sam Finley struggling and J.T. Escobar dealing with back spasms. And the team simply plays better when he’s in control. He only turned the ball over twice Wednesday. “There’s going to be times when we’ll be able to move him off the ball, but right now we’re committed to him running our team. Honestly, he’s done it three games, and in two of the three I think he’s done it well.” … After putting up 24 points and 17 rebounds against Georgia Southern Nov. 16, forward Sebastian Saiz has cooled off considerably. He combined for just 23 points and 17 rebounds in three games in Charleston, and he notched seven points and eight rebounds against Georgia State. “He’s just all over the place, and I don’t know what it is. I’ve explained to him he’s a junior now. We need him to get all-league votes. I’m not saying he needs to be an all-league player, but he needs to be a guy to where when (Ole Miss sports information) puts that sheet in at the end of the year, his name’s on it to be considered for an all-league player, or this team is going to struggle. He understands that, and my hope is that he can evolve into that type player. He’s one of my favorite players I’ve ever had here.”