Ole Miss (12-8, 2-5 SEC) at South Carolina (15-5, 4-3) Date: January 26, 2012 Time: 6 p.m. CT Location: Columbia, S.C. Arena: Colonial Life Arena Radio: 105.5 (Graham Doty) Television: FSN/ESPN3 Dave Baker PxP Debbie Antonelli, Analyst Series vs. USC: UM leads, 17-14
QUICK HITS - Ole Miss fell to 12-8 overall (2-5 SEC) this season after falling at home to No. 15 Georgia Sunday afternoon, 61-47. - Sophomore Valencia McFarland (13.7 ppg) and senior Nikki Byrd (13.5 ppg) lead Ole Miss in scoring. - Byrd recorded her 17th career double-double (and 12th this season) against Mississippi State with 12 points and 14 rebounds. She is tied for ninth all-time at Ole Miss in career double-doubles. - Freshman Tia Faleru recorded her first career double-double against No. 15 Georgia with career-highs in both points (13) and rebounds (10). - Byrd (10.0 rpg) and sophomore Kenyotta Jenkins (3.9 rpg) lead the team in rebounding. - McFarland posted a career-high 25 points at Alabama while senior Whitney Hameth tied her career-high with 15. - Ole Miss has scored fewer than 50 points in three SEC games this season. - Head coach Renee Ladner is in her fifth season at the helm. She has a career record of 70-73 overall and 23-44 in SEC play.
REBELS TRAVEL TO SOUTH CAROLINA Ole Miss will try to get back on the winning track when the team travels to South Carolina Thursday night at 6 p.m. CT. The game will be televised by FSN and streamed online on ESPN3. The Rebels will play three of their next four games on the road. Ole Miss(12-8 overall, 2-5 SEC) is 8-5 at home this season and 4-3 on the road. With 10 regular-season games remaining, the Rebels have won more games this season (12) than they did all of 2010-11 (10).
ABOUT OLE MISS Ole Miss is 12-8 overall this season and 2-5 in SEC play after falling to No. 15 Georgia 61-47 at home Sunday afternoon. The Rebels are led by Nikki Byrd (13.5 ppg, 10.0 rpg) and Valencia McFarland (13.7 ppg, 109 assists). Sophomore Kenyotta Jenkins is second on the team in rebounding, averaging 3.9 rebounds per game. Head coach Renee Ladner is in her fifth season at the helm.
OLE MISS VS. SOUTH CAROLINA Ole Miss leads the all-time series with South Carolina, 17-14. The Gamecocks have won the last two meetings and three of the last four. In games played in South Carolina, the Gamecocks lead, 8-4. Ole Miss’ last win over South Carolina was a 64-63 win in the SEC Tournament in 2010. The Rebels’ last win over the Gamecocks in South Carolina was a 66-65 win on February 8, 2009.
A LOOK AT SOUTH CAROLINA South Carolina enters Thursday night’s game 15-5 overall and 4-3 in SEC play. Last week, the Gamecocks lost at Auburn, 53-49, before beating Vanderbilt on the road, 65-60 in OT. South Carolina is led by Markeshia Grant who is averaging 9.6 points per game and La’Keisha Sutton who is averaging 9.2 points per game. Aleigha Welch leads the team in rebounding, averaging 6.3 points per game. As a team, the Gamecocks average 61.2 points per game while holding its opponents to 48.0 points per game.
NEWS AND NOTES The Rebels have scored fewer than 50 points in back-to-back SEC games and three times total in SEC play this season ... Five times this season, Ole Miss has held its opponent to under 68 points but lost the game (at Lamar, Florida, at Vanderbilt, Mississippi State and Georgia) ... Nine of Ole Miss’ game this season have been decided by nine points or less ... The Rebels won back-to-back SEC games for the first time since January of 2010 when the team won five straight conference games ... Ole Miss’ 14-point margin of victory at Alabama marked the Rebels’ biggest margin of victory over and SEC opponent since January 21, 2010 when Ole Miss beat Mississippi State, 66-58 ... Ole Miss recorded 20 assists on 22 field goals in its win over Arkansas ... With nine regular-season games remaining, Ole Miss has posted 12 wins to date, surpassing the win total from the 2010-11 season (10 games) ... One opposing team this season has shot over 50 percent from the floor against Ole Miss (LSU, 55.2%) ... This season the Rebels have had two winning streaks of four or more games - a five-game winning streak from 11/18-12/3 and a four-game winning streak from 12/16-12/29 ... Ole Miss shot a season-best 57.1 percent from the floor (32-56) in a win over Cleveland State ... Ole Miss’ game against Central Michigan marked the first time this season the Rebels led at the half but lost the game ... Prior to the Central Michigan game this year where Ole Miss allowed 61 boards, the Rebels hadn’t allowed 60+ rebounds since 2003 ... Nikki Byrd has scored a team-high 26 points this season while also recording a team-high 17 rebounds ... Ole Miss held South Alabama without a player scoring in double figures marking the first time since November 19, 2006 that the Rebels did not allow a player on an opposing team to score in double figures.
BYRD RANKED SECOND IN THE NATION IN DOUBLE-DOUBLES In the latest NCAA stats released January 23, senior forward Nikki Byrd second in the nation in double-doubles with 12. She is also 26th in the nation in rebounding, averaging 10.0 rebounds per game. The NCAA stats will be released again on Friday, January, 27. Byrd has been ranked as high as fourth in the nation in rebounding this season.
FALERU RECORDS FIRST CAREER DOUBLE-DOUBLE Freshman Tia Faleru had a career day in Ole Miss’ loss to No. 15 Georgia. She recorded her first career double-double with career highs in both points (13) and rebounds (10).
BYRD RECORDS 17TH CAREER DOUBLE-DOUBLE Senior Nikki Byrd recorded her 17th career double-double in a loss to Mississippi State with 12 points and 14 rebounds. It is her 12th double-double of the season. From Nov. 18 to Dec. 3, Byrd recorded five consecutive double-doubles to become the first player to record five consecutive double-doubles since Armintie Price in 2007.
With her 12th double-double of the year, Byrd becomes the first player since Armintie Price in 2006-07 to record at least 10 double-double in a season. Byrd is also the first player in the SEC this year to record double-digit double-doubles.
Active Players With Double-Doubles Season Career Nikki Byrd 12 17 Valencia McFarland 1 1 Kenyotta Jenkins 1 1 Tia Faleru 1 1 Courtney Marbra 0 2 Pa’Sonna Hope 0 2
BYRD CRACKS CAREER DOUBLE-DOUBLE LIST With 17 career double-doubles, senior Nikki Byrd has moved into a tie for ninth all-time at Ole Miss in career double-doubles. Byrd is tied for ninth all-time with Tarsha Bethley who played from 1996-99. Three more double-doubles from Byrd would give her sole possession of eighth all-time, passing Yolanda Moore who recorded 19 from 1993-96.
CAREER NUMBERS WATCH Senior forward Nikki Byrd is on pace to score over 900 career points and grab over 700 career rebounds. To date, she has recorded 776 career points (269 this year) and 610 career rebounds (198 this year). Byrd is averaging 13.5 points per game and 10.0 rebounds per game this season. Sophomore point guard Valencia McFarland is on pace to end her sophomore year with a total of over 750 career points and over 280 career assists. McFarland has recorded 644 career points (273 this year) and 232 career assists (109 this year). This season, she is averaging 13.7 points per game and 5.5 assists per game.
MCFARLAND RECORDS EIGHTH CAREER 20-POINT GAME Sophomore Valencia McFarland recorded her eighth career 20-point game with a career-high 25 points in a win over Alabama. Earlier this season she scored 24 points against Central Michigan, added 23 in a win over Lipscomb and scored 20 in a win over Grambling State. McFarland recorded four 20-point games last season.
IN SEC WINS, REBELS HEAT UP FROM THREE While the team is shooting just 27.0 percent from three-point range for the season, the Rebels exploded from three-point range in its two SEC wins over Arkansas and Alabama. Ole Miss shot just under 60 percent from three point range in its last two games going 13-22. Valencia McFarland has made six threes in the two SEC wins while Whitney Hameth has made five.
MCFARLAND LEADS TEAM IN ASSISTS...AGAIN Sophomore Valencia McFarland, who has led or tied for the team in assists in 18 games this season, has 109 assists in 20 games for an average of 5.5 assists per game. She has recorded at least five assists in 23 career games for Ole Miss. This season she has recorded double-digit assists in two games with 10 against Cleveland State and a career-high 11 in a win over SELA. As a freshman, she finished the year with a team-leading 123 assists.
MCFARLAND RANKED IN THE TOP-30 NATIONALLY IN ASSISTS In the latest NCAA stats released January 23, point guard Valencia McFarland is 26th nationally in assists, averaging 5.5 assists per game. She is also 40th in assist to turnover ratio (1.88).
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