(18) Mississippi St 87

(14-2, 2-0 SEC)

Ole Miss 76

(9-6, 0-2 SEC)

    2:00 PM ET, January 8, 2005

    C. M. Tad Smith Coliseum, Oxford, Mississippi

    1 2 T
    #18MSST 44 4387
    MISS 37 3976

    Top Performers

    Mississippi State: L. Roberts 23 Pts, 7 Reb, 2 Ast, 1 Stl, 1 Blk

    Ole Miss: T. Eddie 17 Pts, 3 Reb, 1 Stl

    Bulldogs top cross-state rivals for 7th straight time

    OXFORD, Miss. (AP) -- Lawrence Roberts and Mississippi State don't need to be in Starkville to feel at home.

    Roberts scored 23 points and the Bulldogs (No. 22 ESPN/USA Today; No. 18 AP) beat Mississippi 87-76 on Saturday for their NCAA-best 16th straight road win.

    "We don't have no magic dust or anything but to win on the road, you have to defend and you have to rebound," Mississippi State coach Rick Stansbury said. "Our kids understand that because we preach it."

    Gary Ervin added 15 points and 10 assists for the Bulldogs (14-2, 2-0 SEC), who haven't lost a road game since a 70-62 loss at Kentucky nearly two years ago -- though they did lose neutral-site games against Syracuse and Arizona.

    They've won four road games this season by an average of nearly 10 points.

    "Some of the seniors, our eyes get big going on the road," Roberts said. "It's a tremendous challenge -- you're going to somebody else's home court and trying to pull out a win."

    This one wasn't easy for the Bulldogs.

    Mississippi State trailed for much of the first half and struggled at other times during its eighth straight victory. Ole Miss pulled to 52-49 on Tommie Eddie's layup with 15:47 left.

    But Jamall Edmondson and Ontario Harper hit consecutive 3-pointers to key an 8-0 run which pushed the Bulldogs' lead to 11 with 14:27 remaining. Ole Miss didn't get closer than 8 the rest of the way.

    The Rebels, who entered shooting 40 percent from 3-point range, were just 8-of-30 from beyond the arc.

    "I can't get down on my guys for missing shots," Rebels coach Rod Barnes said. "We got guys great looks and just didn't get the breaks we needed."

    Eddie had 17 points, Londrick Nolen scored 12 and Todd Abernethy and Kendrick Fox each added 11 for Ole Miss (9-6, 0-2).

    Harper had 12 points and Marcus Campbell had 11 for the Bulldogs, who shot nearly 57 percent from the field.

    Mississippi State has beaten its cross-state rival seven consecutive times and last lost to the Rebels in January 2002.

    "Knowing they're our rival, it hurts to lose to them over and over again," Nolen said.

    For a while, it looked like the Bulldogs' winning streaks were in jeopardy.

    Three days after a lopsided loss at Arkansas, Ole Miss came out inspired. The Rebels hit 10 of their first 15 shots and outhustled Mississippi State in twice building 12-point leads.

    "We don't ever panic or get down on one another," Roberts said.

    Instead, a 21-4 run helped the Bulldogs dodge the Rebels' upset bid. Mississippi State took the lead for good when a 3-pointer by Edmondson made it 27-26 with 7:05 left in the first half.

    Both teams regained their regular centers. Eddie returned to the Rebels' lineup after missing the Arkansas game for an unspecified academic-related matter.

    "We preach family here, and it was hard to leave a family member at home," Barnes said. "We're back together again. Now we can go forward."

    Campbell was back in the Bulldogs' lineup after serving a one-game suspension for violating a team conduct rule.

    Winsome Frazier, the Bulldogs' top 3-point shooter, left after injuring his left ankle midway through the first half and did not return.

    Stansbury said Frazier is scheduled for X-rays Monday and declined to speculate how long the guard might be out.

    Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press


    Team Stat Comparison

    Points 87 76
    FG Made-Attempted 30-53 (.566) 28-61 (.459)
    3P Made-Attempted 8-17 (.471) 8-30 (.267)
    FT Made-Attempted 19-24 (.792) 12-17 (.706)
    Fouls (Tech/Flagrant) 15 (0/0) 22 (0/0)
    Largest Lead 12 12

    2004-05 Season

    » Jan 8, 2005 MSST 87, @MISS 76Recap
    Feb 26, 2005 @MSST 71, MISS 68Recap