By Garrett Jones
Coming off of an electric win over No. 11 Auburn Saturday night, Missouri men’s basketball fans surely had lofty expectations.
Xavier Pinson and his career-best 32 points didn’t let them down in a 71-68 win over Ole Miss.
Pinson continued a lethal stretch in which he’s scored 20-plus points in three of his last four games. It was just enough to outduel Ole Miss sharpshooter Breein Tyree’s 29 points.
Parker Braun had a highlight-reel play negated in the first half. The freshman slammed down a dunk over three Rebel defenders off of a missed three, but was called for an over-the-back foul. Missouri head coach Cuonzo Martin told the media postgame that referee Pat Adams admitted to him later that Braun shouldn’t have been called for the penalty.
Missouri led by four at halftime and built as much as a ten-point advantage midway through the second half.. Missouri kept him relatively quiet early, until he exploded for all 10 points on an Ole miss scoring run to tie the game at 55. Ole Miss didn’t make a single three-pointer until late in the second, when Khadim Sy hit from distance to draw the Rebels within one.
With the win and Arkansas’ 75-59 loss to Florida, Missouri takes sole possession of tenth place in the conference, which would a first-round bye in the SEC tournament if it started today. The Tigers have won four straight at home, and are back at .500 for the first time since January.
Missouri will be in action next on the road against Arkansas, who has lost five straight, on Saturday at noon. You can watch the game on SEC Network.
Edited by Emma Moloney | firstname.lastname@example.org