OXFORD, Miss. (AP) – Keldon Johnson scored 22 points, Tyler Herro added 20 and No. 6 Kentucky earned a hard-fought 80-76 win over Mississippi on Tuesday night.
Kentucky (25-5, 14-3 Southeastern Conference) bounced back from its 71-52 loss at No. 5 Tennessee on Saturday. PJ Washington had 13 points – all in the second half – to help the Wildcats ward off a tough challenge from the Rebels.
Kentucky shot 55.4 percent from the field and dominated in the paint with 34 points.
Ole Miss (19-11, 9-8) has lost three straight and four of five. The Rebels trimmed their deficit to 78-76 with six seconds left, but Immanuel Quickly made two free throws to put the game out of reach.
Terence Davis led the Rebels with 25 points on his Senior Night. Breein Tyree added 21.
Ole Miss led 39-38 at halftime thanks to 15 points from Davis. The 6-foot-4 guard also had six rebounds and two assists before the break.
Herro scored 13 points in the first half on 6-of-6 shooting.
Kentucky: It was a good bounce-back win for the Wildcats, who were once again tested. Kentucky prevailed thanks to an efficient offense that finished tough chances close to the rim. Washington’s second-half outburst was huge. Kentucky remains in the mix for a No. 1 seed in the NCAA Tournament.
Ole Miss: The Rebels were feeling good about their NCAA Tournament chances a few weeks ago, but three straight defeats have hurt the resume. Two have come against Tennessee and Kentucky, and while those are certainly understandable, it means Saturday’s road game against Missouri could have NCAA implications.
Kentucky: Hosts Florida on Saturday.
Ole Miss: Plays at Missouri on Saturday.