Polynice's Career Night Paces Rebels In 81-78 Win Over South Alabama

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OXFORD, Miss. (AP)  Eniel Polynice scored a career-high 28 points and sparked a decisive game-opening 11-0 surge Tuesday as Ole Miss defeated South Alabama 81-78.

Polynice finished 10-of-15 from the field, including 7-of-11 from three-point range and added seven rebounds with four assists. Chris Warren had 12 points, Kenny Williams added 11 and Dwayne Curtis had 10 to lead the Rebels.

 

Ole Miss (2-0) nearly blew a 22-point first half lead in the final minute. Freshman guard Terrence Watson deflected an inbounds pass by South Alabama (1-1) with 1.5 seconds remaining to preserve the win.

 

Demetric Bennett led South Alabama (1-1) with 28 points, including six field goals from three-point range. Domonic Tilford had 15 and DeAndre Coleman added 12 for the Jaguars.

 

Ole Miss led 51-32 at halftime, sparked by an 11-0 run in the opening five minutes. Polynice had 21 first half points while the Rebels shot 21-of-36 from the field.

 

South Alabama, trailing 81-73 with 20 seconds remaining, got consecutive baskets by Bennett and forced a turnover to get an opportunity for a game-tying shot with 1.5 seconds left.

 

After a pair of timeouts, Watson preserved the lead with the deflection. The Rebels finished 28-of-56 from the field, 50 percent and were 13-of-19 from the free throw line in the second half.

 

South Alabama missed nine field goals attempt in the opening five minutes, but finished 32-of-66 from the field, 49 percent. The Jaguars were 11-of-23 from three-point range and forced 15 second half turnovers to spark the comeback.

 

Ole Miss has won 13 consecutive non-conference home games, dating back to 2005.

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