January 1, 2018 / 1:57 AM / a year ago

Mississippi tops South Carolina in SEC opener

Mississippi tops South Carolina in SEC opener

Deandre Burnett scored 18 points and doled out six assists as Mississippi began SEC play by eking out a 74-69 win over South Carolina on Sunday night in Oxford, Miss.

The senior guard took over down the stretch as the Rebels improved to 8-5 overall and 7-3 in the Pavilion at Ole Miss. The Gamecocks fell to 9-3.

Markel Crawford contributed 17 points and also hit three 3-pointers for Andy Kennedy’s Mississippi squad, while Bruce Stevens added 10 points and four rebounds for the Rebels.

South Carolina senior guard Frank Booker set career bests for points (21) and 3-pointers (six). Chris Silva notched his ninth career double-double, fourth this season, with 21 points and 13 rebounds in a losing effort.

South Carolina jumped to an early lead, courtesy of a 9-0 run. Ole Miss countered with a 7-0 run of its own to take a 31-30 lead into halftime.

The back-and-forth affair continued in the second half as the Gamecocks and Rebels traded leads 11 times and tied one another eight times. South Carolina led by as many as nine points in the first half, while Ole Miss pushed its biggest advantage to six points late in the game.

The Rebels shot 41 percent from the field and 39 from beyond the arc, while the Gamecocks finished with 38 percent shooting and 40 percent from 3-point range.

South Carolina won the glass by a 43-30 margin. Ole Miss blocked seven shots and had nine steals.

Both teams are back in action on Jan. 3 when Ole Miss travels to Athens, Ga., to face Georgia and the Gamecocks return to Columbia, S.C., to play host to Missouri.

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