OXFORD, Miss. - Illinois State shot the lights out, and Ole Miss couldn't finish a comeback attempt as the Rebels lost 96-93 in overtime in the first round of the NIT.
Ole Miss finishes its 2011-12 season with a 20-14 record, while Illinois State improved to 21-13 and advances to the second round where they will face No. 3 Stanford on March 17.
Off the bench, freshman guard LaDarius White scored a career-high 25 points to lead Ole Miss. In his final collegiate game, senior Terrance Henry finished with 21 points.
Illinois State was led by the strong backcourt duo of junior Tyler Brown and freshman Nic Moore. The duo combined to score 50 of the Redbirds’ 96 points with Brown producing a season-tying best 26 and Moore a career-high 24. Brown finished 9-of-10 from the field and 8-of-9 from beyond distance, while Moore finished 7-of-9 from the field and a perfect 6-of-6 from three.
The Redbirds’ 17 3-pointers set a Tad Smith Coliseum record by any team.
The Rebels trailed by 12 at halftime and by the same margin with 12:22 left in regulation before making a run.
Jarvis Summers and Nick Williams hit back-to-back three’s to tie the game at 81-81 with 50 seconds left in regulation. The teams traded scores for the next 50 seconds before heading to overtime.
Summers finished with 16 points and a career-high 12 assists (tied for the fifth-most in school history). Murphy Holloway added 16 points and six boards.
In the extra session, Illinois State opened on a 6-0 run to lead 90-84 with 3:08 left. Ole Miss would respond like they have done all season. The Rebels cut into the deficit to trail 93-95 with a chance to tie or win the game with just under 10 seconds remaining but were unable to get off a shot.
As a team, the Redbirds shot a dazzling 17-of-23 (74 percent) from beyond the arc and nearly 63 percent from the field. In the first half, they were 9-of-13 from three.
Ole Miss was defeated despite having six fewer turnovers than Illinois State.
The Redbirds came into Wednesday night’s contest carrying plenty of momentum. They advanced to the Missouri Valley Tournament title game before falling to NCAA Tournament participant No. 25 Creighton. In the semifinals of the tournament they upset No. 15 Wichita State.
Henry finished his Rebel career with 1,095 points, which is 28th-most in school history.
Ole Miss reached 20 wins for the fifth time in the last six seasons, all under head coach Andy Kennedy. He is the first coach in school history to direct the team to five 20-win season and five postseason appearances.
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