Sophomore Terence Davis poured in 26 points and junior Deandre Burnett added 16, but the Rebels fell short against the Razorbacks in the quarterfinals of the SEC Tournament 73-72 Friday.
Third-seeded Arkansas (24-8) has won seven of eight and will play Vanderbilt, a 72-62 overtime winner over No. 17 Florida, in Saturday’s semifinals.
Watkins’ layup made it 71-70, and Daryl Macon hit two free throws with 23.8 seconds left to pad Arkansas’ lead. The Razorbacks needed every point as the Rebels took and missed a flurry of shots in the final 10 seconds before Justas Furmanavicius’ layup just before the buzzer.
Officials reviewed the play before ruling the game over.
No. 6 seed Ole Miss (20-13) snapped a two-game winning streak.
Macon finished with 17 points, including 9 of 10 at the free throw line. Jaylen Barford and Dusty Hannahs each added 13.
This was the first time these teams have played in the SEC Tournament, and they turned in a doozy after Arkansas routed Ole Miss 98-80 on Feb. 18.
Ole Miss, fresh off beating hapless Missouri in the Rebels’ tournament opener, jumped out to a 17-8 lead on a 3-pointer by Davis. After that, neither team led by more than six in a game featuring 13 ties, including 40-40 at halftime, along with 12 lead changes.
Breein Tyree gave Ole Miss its last lead at 70-69 with a 3-pointer with 1:47 to go. The Rebels didn’t score again until a layup that was too little and too late.
With Moses Kingsley helping harass Sebastian Saiz, the Ole Miss senior who was the SEC’s only player to average a double-double this season, into just nine points and 17 rebounds. Kennedy said he knew Saiz was disappointed after playing so hard.
“He just really had a difficult time finishing over their size in both games,” Kennedy said.
Deandre Burnett added 16 points, and Tyree had 13 for Ole Miss.
Courtesy of Ole Miss Sports