Vols knock off Ole Miss, 86-70

Tennessee forward Jeronne Maymon (34) drives in between Ole Miss forward Sebastian Saiz (11) and Ole Miss guard Marshall Henderson (22) during the first half at the Thompson-Boling Arena in Knoxville on Wednesday, Jan. 29, 2014. (ADAM LAU/NEWS SENTINEL)

Photo by Adam Lau

Tennessee forward Jeronne Maymon (34) drives in between Ole Miss forward Sebastian Saiz (11) and Ole Miss guard Marshall Henderson (22) during the first half at the Thompson-Boling Arena in Knoxville on Wednesday, Jan. 29, 2014. (ADAM LAU/NEWS SENTINEL)

Marshall Henderson started slow, caught fire then got stopped in his tracks.

The Tennessee men’s basketball team beat Ole Miss 86-70 at Thompson Boling Arena on Wednesday night.

While the Rebels’ star senior guard scored 26 points, the Vols clamped down when it mattered most, holding Henderson to just six more points once the Rebels came within five (50-45) with 14 minutes to play.

“Marshall. Marshall. Marshall,” the UT student section shouted as the Vols beat the polarizing player for the first time.

With the win, UT (13-7, 4-3 SEC) snapped a three-game losing streak to the Rebels (14-5, 5-1) and kept them from claiming back to back wins in Knoxville since they did it in 1979 and 80.

Jordan McRae scored 26 of his own, rebounding from his season-low five-point performance in a loss at Florida last Saturday. Jeronne Maymon and Josh Richardson both scored 16. Jarnell Stokes pulled down 13 points and 14 rebounds.

UT had a 19-point lead with 2:23 to play in the first half. But the Rebels closed the half on an 11-4 run that hinged on a quickly heating Henderson, who went to the side line with what looked like a sore hip.

When he checked back in, the Vols led 13-4 with 15:12 to play in the first half. His first two 3-pointers failed to draw iron. His first of nine successful 3-pointers found the net 6:24 left in the first half. He sank his first 3-pointer of the second half and was off and running again — until the Vols cooled him off.

After saying he wasn’t sure if he would change his starting rotation after poor guard play in the Vols’ blowout loss to Florida last Saturday, Martin decided to switch things up. He started freshman point guard Darius Thompson ahead of senior Antonio Barton. Thompson had seven points and seven assists.

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Comments » 10

OrangePride writes:

As I said earlier this week, this year's Vols have a habit of turning in a stinker then following it with a good performance. Tonight was a further example. Henderson tried to turn it into his own private show, but the defense got in top of him and gave him very little room to do much of anything. Good job by the Vols, AND... good job by Cuonzo managing this game and making the right moves. And, as is usually the case when we win, great game from McRae!

robert#1417579 writes:

Tennessee is 13 - 7, not 12 - 8. Ole Piss is 14 - 6, not 14 - 5. Good win, but I don't trust this team at all. No consistency. Looked good tonight, but could be pathetic again at any time. This team should be 17 - 3, at the worst, right now.

Chris_L75 writes:

All right, I'll take the bait: This is a gigantic momentum-builder that will propel us to run the table and storm into March Madness with the wind in our sails and an unquenchable thirst to bring home a title! Whooooh! (A dream is a wish your heart makes.)

In all seriousness, the team may be sending a message here. I missed the UVA game (illness) and tonight (snow and ice) - the two best performances of the season. So much for being part of the solution and not the problem. Hats off to Thompson, though, for running the show with poise and purpose. Let's hope he can do the same on the road, against a beatable Bama team that will be on short rest. GBO.

oldschoolvol writes:

Great game by Thompson. His ability to make the entry passes inside opened up the outside game and got McCrae and Richardson open looks. The difference tonight was our ability to attack Mississippi's zone. Mississippi's defense isn't in the same league as Florida's. I also think we play a whole lot better when we play up tempo like we did tonight. Good move by Zo to pick up the pace.

Plasticman85 writes:

in response to OrangePride:

As I said earlier this week, this year's Vols have a habit of turning in a stinker then following it with a good performance. Tonight was a further example. Henderson tried to turn it into his own private show, but the defense got in top of him and gave him very little room to do much of anything. Good job by the Vols, AND... good job by Cuonzo managing this game and making the right moves. And, as is usually the case when we win, great game from McRae!

This is like the third time this season the freaking beat writer for the Vols provided the wrong record. You would think this wouldn't happen but wait, it's the News -Sentinel . That explains it

BenFrederickson writes:

in response to robert#1417579:

Tennessee is 13 - 7, not 12 - 8. Ole Piss is 14 - 6, not 14 - 5. Good win, but I don't trust this team at all. No consistency. Looked good tonight, but could be pathetic again at any time. This team should be 17 - 3, at the worst, right now.

You're correct. Should be fixed. Thanks for the catch.

no1djkb#278630 writes:

in response to BenFrederickson:

You're correct. Should be fixed. Thanks for the catch.

I listen to you online from Nashville. I like how you break down the Vols. Keep up the good work man.

wilk58 writes:

in response to OrangePride:

As I said earlier this week, this year's Vols have a habit of turning in a stinker then following it with a good performance. Tonight was a further example. Henderson tried to turn it into his own private show, but the defense got in top of him and gave him very little room to do much of anything. Good job by the Vols, AND... good job by Cuonzo managing this game and making the right moves. And, as is usually the case when we win, great game from McRae!

As aggravating as his antics are the kid is a player. He put in 26 and they had lead cut to 5 so IMO that is more than not much of anything.

OrangePride writes:

in response to wilk58:

As aggravating as his antics are the kid is a player. He put in 26 and they had lead cut to 5 so IMO that is more than not much of anything.

You are correct, he was/is a very special talent and his cutting the lead to just 5 almost by himself is what I meant by "turning it in to his own show.". But after that the defense blanketed him and kept him from doing his thing. That was what the "not much of anything" comment was directed at. Perhaps I wasn't too clear. Sorry.

johnlg00 writes:

Excellent team performance by the Vols. Finally beating Henderson and Ole Miss, and how they did it, was the main takeaway from this game. Otherwise, it's just another game the Vols couldn't afford to lose. I guess the consistency issue will always be there with this team, at least until is isn't, but this was a win they can and should build on.

Lots of positives from Thompson last night. Barton contributed off the bench. When the team plays at a faster pace, Thompson's relative weakness on defense is less important; there are more possessions in the game for him to do GOOD things as well. I hope Barton can adjust mentally and emotionally to coming off the bench. If he keeps a good attitude and doesn't try to do too much when he is in there, he and Thompson can make a nice pair at PG.

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