A few quick notes as they’re breaking down stuff in the Georgia Dome.
It was a very slow start for Marshall Henderson and Jarvis Summers while State was knocking down shots. Ole Miss has to have those two guys shoot well and score to win games, and down the stretch they did that.
Both finished with 21 points. Henderson was 7-for-19 from 3, 36.8 percent, one of this better games of the last month.
Here’s the Ole Miss postgame:
Summers was 7-for-17 shooting, 3-for-4 from 3.
Throughout the comeback there were big plays from the supporting cast, whether a driving layup from LaDarius White to take the lead, big shots from Sebastian Saiz or a big 3 from Anthony Perez. There were contributions across the board that haven’t been there many times this season.
There was a time during the game that Ole Miss was minus-8 on the glass. They finished minus-1, covering a lot of ground in that comeback from a 13-point deficit.
There were big minutes from Demarco Cox. Kennedy addresses that in the quotes below. Minutes after Kennedy was talking about continents and understanding the rivalry, Sebastian Saiz was on Twitter indicating he has a pretty good grasp of the Ole Miss-MSU thing:
So, it’s Ole Miss and Georgia in the late game Friday, which it’s actually already Friday in this time zone.
I hope to add video to this blog when I get back to the room.
Here’s Kennedy from the postgame:
“My sense of urgency kicks in at 9 a.m. It takes them another 12 or 13 hours. Eventually the message gets in.
“When you make shots, it’s amazing how much energy you have. When you miss shots that energy goes away quickly.
“The first half they were making shots. They were hopping all around the gym. We couldn’t make one. I was just trying to stay in the game. ‘Let’s just stay in the game, stay in the game.’ The script got flipped in the second half. They were struggling a little bit. We were zoning them, gapping them. We started doing a better job on the glass in the last 10 minutes. It ends up about even. We turned them over some. We made plays in the open floor.
“We were determined to get Jarvis in some ball-screen action and put some pressure on the rim as opposed to settling, settling, settling from the perimeter. Marshall’s going to be Marshall, but we can’t fall in love with jump shots. We’ve got to drive the ball. Once we started making shots I thought we had a lot more energy down the stretch.
“They could feel the momentum start to turn. They were in complete control of the game. We kept coming, kept coming, kept coming. We go from being up two to being up eight to being up 12. That’s when they got a little bit slower, and that’s when Marshall had a chance to put down a couple of daggers, and he did.”
(On Henderson and Summers)
These are our two all-league players, and those are the guys that have to make the plays. We design everything for them to be in position to make a play. Marshall was right. In the first half he had two or three looks that were right there and they rattled out, and State’s going down and knocking them down. I thought his looks were pretty similar. We changed a few angles because of the way they were guarding. They were guarding Marshall on the opposite side of the basket. We adjusted some angles.”
(On the play of Demarco Cox)
I went to the Mississippi guy early. Sometimes we can say, ‘Hey, this is a rivalry.’ When you play and say if you lose the season’s over, which is in essence what we were doing tonight. You hope that would be all the motivation you need. Sometime when you’re 18 years old and from another continent you don’t quite understand that. So I wanted to go with guys from this continent that understood, especially that Mississippi State and Ole Miss … hopefully that would motivate Bear, so I went to him early, and he responded for us.”