No. 3 Kentucky Outlasts No. 25 Ole Miss
LEXINGTON, Ky. (AP) - Terrico White had 19 points and seven rebounds, but No. 25 Ole Miss was unable to complete the upset attempt at No. 3 Kentucky, losing 85-75 Tuesday night.
Ole Miss closed the game to within three points at 60-57 in the second half, but the Wildcats used a home crowd of more than 24,000 to propel them to victory.
John Wall shook off a recent slump to score 17 points to go with seven assists to lead Kentucky.
DeMarcus Cousins added 18 points and 13 rebounds for the Wildcats (21-1, 6-1 Southeastern Conference), who built an early double-digit lead then held off a couple of second-half rallies by the Rebels.
Even better for the Wildcats was the steady play of Wall, who was all smiles following a meeting with coach John Calipari to clear the air after both expressed frustration over the freshman's recent play.
Kentucky shot 50 percent from the field and outscored the Rebels 44-30 in the paint.
Ole Miss hung around, however, behind the play of White and Eniel Polynice as the game turned into a tennis match. One team would go on a run, and the other would answer.
Kentucky put together a 15-0 burst to go up 27-9 but the Rebels rallied with an 11-2 surge. The Wildcats managed to take a 46-37 halftime lead, an advantage that could have been larger if not for 11 turnovers.
Darnell Dodson hit two 3-pointers early in the second half to help Kentucky extend the lead to 58-41, but Ole Miss kept coming.
The Rebels pulled within 60-57 on a basket by White with 13:55 to play before the Wildcats did something it's been unable to do at times this season: finish strong.
Cousins, collecting his fifth straight double-double, started Kentucky's game-clinching 11-2 run with a putback. Darius Miller then knocked down a 3-pointer before Cousins took a charge. Patrick Patterson, who had 12 points, nailed a 3-pointer then added a three-point play as the Wildcats went back in front 71-59.
Ole Miss never got back within single digits, and Wall capped his night with a 3-pointer to put Kentucky up 80-62 with 4:05 remaining.
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