By Adam Brown
The Ole Miss women’s basketball team will return to the hardwood on Thursday night as they host the Auburn Tigers. Tipoff is set for 6 p.m. on SEC Network +.
Ole Miss (6-1, 0-1 SEC) looks to bounce back from a heartbreaking overtime 77-69 loss to LSU on Monday. The Rebels had three players score in double figures, led by Shakira Austin with 20 points, while Snudda Collins added 14 and Donnetta Johnson contributed 10.
Before the squad’s matchup with LSU, Coach Yolett McPhee-McCuin’s team had remained off of the court for over 16-days due to positive COVID-19 tests and contact tracing within the program.
“One thing that I told the players, we can’t blame, complain or defend,” McPhee-McCuin said. “This is the COVID year, this is how it works. You’ll be on a roll, and then you’ll be out for two weeks. I felt like we were just fatigued. Obviously, we didn’t have everybody, but I thought we had enough. There were opportunities in the game where we should have just won, but we didn’t have enough legs.”
This season, the Rebels have been an all-around team effort on the defensive side of the ball, with Ole Miss forcing the NCAA’s seventh-most turnovers per game (23.3) helped by the nation’s 16th-most steals (12.1), yielding the NCAA’s 10th-best turnover margin in 2020-21 at +8.1 per game.
Auburn (5-5, 0-2 SEC) will enter the Pavilion following a 76-44 loss to the Georgia Bulldogs.
Auburn’s defense has forced an average of 12.5 steals per game (leading the SEC), landing them at the 10th overall spot in the NCAA.
When the ball is tipped off, it will be the 63rd all-time meeting between the Rebels and the Tigers. Auburn currently has a 37-25 advantage in the series. The Tigers have won the last three meetings, including a 59-43 victory last season.