Men's Basketball Falls To Vanderbilt, 76-68

Feb. 1, 2003

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NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) - Matt Freije scored 20 points and Vanderbilt won back-to-back Southeastern Conference games for the first time this season with a 76-68 victory against Mississippi on Saturday night.

Vanderbilt (10-8, 3-4) led by as many as 13 points in the second half, but a 10-2 run by Mississippi (12-6, 3-4) pulled the Rebels within 70-66 with 1:58 to play.

A Freije bucket and a free throw by Scott Hundley built the lead back to 73-66 with 52 seconds left. The lead never dipped below five the rest of the way.

Mississippi came into the game leading the SEC in scoring defense, but the 76 points scored by Vanderbilt was the most allowed by the Rebels this season. The Commodores played sharp offensively for the third consecutive game, shooting 52.2 percent for the game.

Justin Reed led the way for Mississippi by matching his career high with 26 points. Emmanuel Wade added a career-high 20 points for the Rebels.

For Vanderbilt, Hundley came off the bench and scored a season-high 18 points and Brian Thornton added 16 points before fouling out.

Vanderbilt led 36-30 at halftime on the strength of a Russell Lakey 3-pointer with four seconds remaining. The Commodores largest lead of a tight first half was 29-20 after a pair of Freije free throws with 5:44 to play. Mississippi then went on a 10-4 run before Lakey's 3-pointer closed the first-half scoring.

Vanderbilt has won 11 of its last 12 games against Mississippi at Memorial Gym. The win came on the heels of a 94-91 upset of No. 15 Georgia.

Vanderbilt played its second straight game without starting guard Corey Smith, who is out with a broken hand.

 

 

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