Missouri falls to Ole Miss in foul fest

Ole Miss broke away thanks to a layup from Moody, who then scored two more buckets to separate the lead to eight points.
Missouri guard Namon Wright (12) joins his team for a pregame huddle moments before tipoff against Tennessee on Feb. 13 in Mizzou Arena.

Heading into the new Pavilion at Ole Miss on Tuesday night, the Missouri men’s basketball team looked to knock off the Rebels and get back in the winning column after their loss to Arkansas on Saturday.

Two early jumpers from Missouri, sophomore guard Namon Wright and freshman forward Kevin Puryear, contributed to a quick start, but Mizzou couldn’t hang on as they fell, 85-76.

One of the keys for Mizzou heading into the game was to stop Ole Miss’ Stefan Moody. The 5-foot-9 senior point guard with freakish athleticism scored 23 points and recorded eight rebounds and five assists weeks ago at Mizzou Arena and Tuesday at home, Moody had it going again.

His first three fell with 15 minutes remaining in the first half, but opposing him was Missouri sophomore guard Tramaine Isabell as freshman guard Terrence Phillips was in foul trouble.

Isabell has shown his offensive prowess in spots all year and he was able to slice and dice his way to the rim at ease Tuesday night. By halftime, with Missouri trailing 43-42, both Isabell and Moody had 14 points.

The second half began with both teams trading buckets, and that trend continued for most of the half.

Both Ole Miss and Missouri struggled with foul trouble throughout the contest — Missouri’s 31 fouls was the most by the team all year — and the second half turned sloppy.

With 11:18 remaining in the game and Missouri trailing 57-54, Ole Miss broke away thanks to a layup from Moody who then scored two more buckets to separate the lead to eight points.

Ultimately, the Tigers weren’t able to overcome a 13-3 run that spanned five minutes from that point and Missouri fell.

Next up for Mizzou, the Tigers will face off at home against No. 21 Texas A&M at 3 p.m. Saturday on ESPNU.

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