DAYTON, Ohio -- Chris Johnson scored 16 points and Dayton used two second-half runs in a 62-50 victory over Mississippi on Friday night.
Dayton (10-4) built a 28-23 halftime lead to a 39-27 advantage early in the second half. The 11-5 run to start the second was sparked by consecutive 3-pointers by Johnson. Ole Miss (9-4) cut Dayton's lead to 47-41 with 7:44 left, but the Flyers answered with an 11-4 run to take control for good.
Dayton dominated Ole Miss 43-33 on the boards. Rebels leading rebounder Murphy Holloway missed his first game of the season with a high ankle sprain. Dayton starting forward Josh Benson left the game twice in the first half with an injured left knee. He did not play in the second half and will have an MRI on Saturday.
Dayton shot only 27.5 percent in the first half, but benefited from 13 offensive rebounds to take a 28-23 lead. Had it not been from Johnson making 3 of 6 3-pointers for 10 points, the Flyers would have been trailing.
Johnson's first 3-pointer came on a pass from the post to finally bust Ole Miss's 2/3 zone for an 18-17 lead with 7:49 left in the half. The Rebels soon returned to man-to-man, but Johnson got open for another 3-pointer for a 23-17 lead at 5:03.
The Rebels, who have lost three straight, went on a 6-2 run to close to 25-23. They appeared to have tied the score when Aaron Jones followed in a miss with a dunk, but he was called for interference with 7 seconds left, negating the basket. Dayton point guard Kevin Dillard pushed the ball into the lane and found Johnson open in the right corner for a 3-pointer at the halftime buzzer.
The Flyers made half of their shots in the second half to finish at 35.5 percent. But it was a man-to-man defense that allowed Ole Miss few uncontested shots and the rebounding advantage that kept the Rebels from seriously challenging Dayton's lead.
Ole Miss shot 38.8 percent from the field, including only 1 of 10 on 3-point attempts, and was only 11 of 21 from the free-throw line.
Dayton, which is now 16-6 in the past five seasons against teams from BCS conferences (4-1 this season), has two victories over SEC opponents during the current campaign. The Flyers, from the Atlantic 10, also defeated then-No. 16 Alabama on Dec. 7.