The Rebels appeared to be in position to win, but the SEC road – and UT veteran all-star Wayne Chism – jumped up and pulled victory over to the side of the Big Orange.
Chism, a senior, scored 26 points, pulled down 12 rebounds, and was a perfect 10-10 from the free throw line including 6-6 in the overtime period.
"Wayne Chism stepped up like you want leaders to do," said Ole Miss head coach Andy Kennedy. "He's the guy they want to step up and make plays."
The Vols, behind 33-28 at halftime, trailed 52-40 with 9:18 left as Chris Warren nailed a 3-pointer to match the Rebels' largest lead of the game. Tennessee immediately got a couple of dunks to ignite the crowd, followed by two 3-pointers, both by Chism, to trail just 54-52 with six minutes to go.
The Volunteers capped a 13-2 run with a 3-pointer from Josh Bone with 5:21 to go for UT's first lead of the entire game.
The game see-sawed the rest of the way, and a DeAundre Cranston putback for Ole Miss tied it 59-59 with 52 seconds left. Both teams had chances to win it in regulation, and Warren missed a 3-pointer in the last seconds that would have won it for Ole Miss in regulation.
In overtime Murphy Holloway scored on a layup to give UM a 61-59 lead, but the Volunteers scored five straight, including another Bone trey, for a 64-61 UT lead.
With 1:12 left Terrico White nailed a 3-pointer and was fouled by J.P. Prince. The Rebel sophomore guard was good on the free throw, and UM led 65-64 after the four-point play.
Chism at the free throw line extended the Tennessee lead as he sank six straight to move his team from a 65-64 deficit to a 70-65 advantage with 10 seconds left, and the damage for the Rebels was done.
"Twenty-one turnovers is probably a season high for us," Kennedy said. "It's disappointing because we had the ball in the hands of the guys we wanted, and then we made some poor decisions and they made us pay."
Warren led Ole Miss with 19 points, while White had 18 and Zach Graham 16. UT (14-2 overall, 2-0 SEC) won the battle of the boards 46-41.
Ole Miss (13-4, 1-2) hosts South Carolina Wednesday at 8 p.m.
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