Winning Hoops

The Ole Miss men's and women's basketball teams picked up victories over the weekend. The women even won a tourney.

Ole Miss got through its men's basketball game Sunday afternoon to move to 5-1. It was one of those get a win and move on kind of contests. The Rebels defeated a decent Texas A&M-Corpus Christi team under former Tulane and Miami (Fla.) head coach Perry Clark by a 73-58 count.

The Rebels had an impressively low six turnovers in the contest, and six players dished out 14 assists as taking care of the basketball and making good decisions are an emphasis. Ole Miss also had eight steals from the Islanders.

It's back on the road now as the Rebels head to Arkansas State for a Wednesday night game against the Red Wolves. They'll have to beware of the upset at the hands of John Brady's ballclub. The former LSU head coach brought his first ASU team to Oxford to open the season last November and lost 65-52.

Arkansas State, 3-2 on the season, played Sunday as well, losing at home to Indiana State. A three-pointer by sophomore guard Daniel Bryant with 33 seconds left pulled ASU to within three-points of ISU (5-2) at 75-72. But the Sycamores hit a couple of free-throws to seal it 77-72.

"There are two things that I need to correct and get our team to do better," Brady said. "We didn't defend well at home, and we shot 29 free throws and made 15."

The Red Wolves were outrebounded by the Sycamores, pulling down 29 boards to Indiana State's 42.

Board work hasn't been the Rebels' forte' this season either. Against Corpus Christi, Ole Miss only had the better of it 38-36.

Reginald Buckner drew his first start, and Terrance Henry had a solid outing. Buckner, the 6-foot-8 freshman, scored eight points with three rebounds, a block and a steal in 21 minutes. Henry, a 6-9 sophomore, had 12 points, four rebounds, and three assists in 22 minutes.

The Rebels shot 27-of-63 from the field for 42 percent, but they managed only 8-of-31 from three-point range. Ole Miss head coach Andy Kennedy expressed his concern about the shots ratio in the postgame.

"We started settling for the three," he said.

The Rebels are feeling some pain. Sophomore Murphy Holloway did not play because of a turned ankle he suffered in practice Friday. He may be able to play in Jonesboro.

Junior Eniel Polynice left the court during the second half because of back pain, according to Kennedy. It's something Polynice has dealt with for a while and they continue to monitor it.

After the game at ASU, the Rebels are at home for a Saturday noon game against Southern Mississippi.

The Ole Miss women's basketball team improved to 5-1 on the season and captured a tournament championship over the Thanksgiving weekend.

Bianca Thomas scored a game-high 30 points and was named tournament MVP in leading her Ole Miss team to an 80-57 win over Florida Atlantic in the title game of the Florida Atlantic/Boca Bridge Hotel Holiday Tournament.

Thomas averaged 20.5 points over the course of the two games and has now scored at least 22 points in four of the team's first five games. She currently leads the SEC in scoring at 22.7 points per game.

The Rebels had defeated San Jose State 78-33 in the tourney's opening round.

Against FAU, Ole Miss was 12-for-12 from the free throw line to mark the first time since the 2002-03 season that a Rebel women's basketball team had been perfect from the charity stripe. In that game, the Rebels went 17-for-17 against Mississippi State.

The UM women now travel to Little Rock for a game against UALR (3-3) on Wednesday beginning at 5:15 p.m.


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