SEC Men's Basketball Today: December 17 > SEC > NEWS
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    SEC Men's Basketball Today: December 17

    Mississippi State 80, Detroit 75
    Ohio State 74, South Carolina 66
    Arkansas 62, Southeastern Louisiana 55
    Florida 84, Texas A&M 64
    Southern Miss 86, Ole Miss 82
    Indiana State 61, Vanderbilt 55
    Auburn 84, North Florida 71
    Kentucky 87, Chattanooga 62
    Georgia 63, USC 59
    Kansas State 71, Alabama 58

    Hood helps No. 17 Mississippi State top Detroit, 80-75

    DETROIT (AP) -- Rodney Hood's jump shot with 17.7 seconds left lifted No. 17 Mississippi State to a 80-75 win over Detroit on Saturday, the 10th straight victory for the Bulldogs.

    Hood's shot broke a 75-75 tie and Arnett Moultrie blocked a shot seconds later to keep the Bulldogs (11-1) ahead.

    Moultrie and Brian Bryant each scored 17 points and Renardo Sidney added 16 as Mississippi State earned the 1,300th win in school history.

    Chase Simon and Ray McCallum both scored 17 for the Titans (5-8), who lost their second straight.

    Mississippi State led 39-36 at the half.

    Detroit trailed by as many as 15 points early in the final half but rallied to tie it when Chase Simon completed a three-point play with 2:31 to play. Ray McCallum tied it again with a jump shot with 40.7 seconds left.

    Detroit's Eli Holman got the ball near the basket in the final seconds but Moultrie swatted away his shot.

    No. 2 Ohio State Gets Past Tough South Carolina, 74-66

    COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) -- Deshaun Thomas scored a career high 30 points and No. 2 Ohio State overcame the loss of star Jared Sullinger to defeat South Carolina 74-66 on Saturday and give Thad Matta his 200th win as Buckeyes coach.

    Sullinger left in the first half after getting kicked in the left foot. X-rays showed no fracture, although it wasn't known if Sullinger would play against Lamar on Tuesday night in Ohio State's next game.

    Even if he can't, Thomas showed he's more than ready to lead Ohio State (10-1). The 6-foot-7 sophomore hit 13 of 16 shots and surpassed his previous high of 24 points set last season against North Carolina A&T. William Buford added 17 points for Ohio State.

    Malik Cooke led South Carolina (4-6) with 21 points.

    Matta, in his ninth season with Ohio State, became just the third coach in school history to reach 200 wins, joining Fred Taylor (279 wins 1959-76) and Harold G. Olsen (254 from 1923-46).

    Ohio State trailed 35-29 as Lakeem Jackson started the second half with all-too easy inside bucket. Then the Buckeyes began a 20-8 charge to take control.

    Thomas got the run started with a jumper. Lenselle Smith Jr. had a basket and a 3-pointer to put Ohio State in front for good, 41-37. Thomas added a 3-pointer and finished the surge with a short jump shot for a 49-43 lead.

    The Buckeyes eventually built the lead to 11 points.

    South Carolina cut things to 70-63 in the in the final minute. But Buford answered with a 3-pointer with 48.2 seconds to go to restore Ohio State's edge.

    Ohio State figured to roll over a troubled Gamecocks club that had already lost to Elon and Tennessee State. Things started to change for the Buckeyes when Sullinger came up limping after getting kicked in the left foot on an early possession.

    Trainers spent several minutes working on Sullinger's foot on the bench before he put his sneaker back on, talked with Matta and returned to action. But Sullinger was limping badly moments later after defending Carlton Geathers' drive with 10 minutes to go.

    Ohio State was up 18-11 after William Buford hit a 3-pointer and made a breakaway basket off a South Carolina miss.

    The Gamecocks, though, closed the half with a 22-11 run to lead 33-29 at the break. Malik Cooke had 10 points in the half, including a pair of baskets in the final two minutes as the Gamecocks moved in front.

    South Carolina was also helped by a technical foul on Ohio State's Amir Williams, who taunted R.J. Slawson after a bucket.

    The Buckeyes had hoped to build on the momentum with Sullinger back for his second straight game. He had missed two games with back spasms, including Ohio State's only loss of the season, 78-67, at Kansas last Saturday.

    Earlier this week, Sullinger looked like his smooth, confident self with 12 points and 10 rebounds in 25 minutes of action in an 82-58 win at USC Upstate on Wednesday.

    Results of the X-rays showed no fracture in the foot. Still, team spokesman Dan Wallenberg said it was too soon to know when Sullinger might play again. Ohio State faces Lamar on Tuesday and Miami of Ohio on Thursday before opening Big Ten Conference play against Northwestern on Dec. 28.

    Madden leads Arkansas past SE Louisiana 62-55

    FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. (AP) -- Freshman Ky Madden scored 10 points and had seven assists off the bench to help Arkansas pull away Saturday for a 62-55 win over Southeastern Louisiana.

    The win snapped a two-game losing streak for the Razorbacks (6-3) and was the first of seven consecutive home games. Arkansas, which shot a combined 33 percent from the field in its last two losses on the road at Connecticut and Oklahoma, shot 47 percent in this game and scored 24 points off 20 Southeastern Louisiana turnovers.

    Madden's points led the Razorbacks, who also had eight points each from Mardracus Wade, Rickey Scott and Devonta Abron.

    Elgin Bailey led the Lions (5-4) with 12 points, and DeShawn Patterson and Daron Populist had 11 apiece. Southeastern Louisiana shot just 33 percent from the field.

    No. 13 Florida beats No. 22 Texas A&M 84-64

    SUNRISE, Fla. (AP) -- Kenny Boynton sank six 3-pointers and No. 13 Florida built an early 16-point lead, then coasted past No. 22 Texas A&M 84-64 Saturday.

    Boynton scored 22 points and was voted the game's most valuable player at the Orange Bowl Classic. Erving Walker had 16 points and six assists, and Bradley Beal added 16 points for Florida.

    The Gators came into the game leading the nation in 3-pointers and ranked third in scoring, and they showed why from the start. Florida took leads of 7-0, 18-2 and 35-14.

    At halftime it was 50-25, with Florida outscoring Texas A&M 21-0 from 3-point range. The scoring spree came against an Aggies team that had been allowing only 51.4 points per game.

    Turnovers hurt the Aggies early, and they played eight minutes before making their first basket.

    The Gators (8-2) won for the first time in three games this season against teams that are in the Top 25. Texas A&M (8-2) had a six-game winning streak snapped.

    The Aggies' Khris Middleton, playing in his second game after being sidelined with a knee injury, shot only five for 18. He scored 12 points and added seven rebounds and seven assists.

    David Loubeau, a native of nearby Miami, scored 20 points for the Aggies. Elston Turner also had 20.

    Erik Murphy scored 13 for the Gators, including seven of their first nine points.

    The Gators' victory came one day after they announced a three-year extension for coach Billy Donovan through 2015-16. Florida's only losses have been to No. 1 Syracuse and No. 2 Ohio State.

    The Gators finished just under their scoring average of 86.8 points per game. More than half their shots came from 3-point range, and they made 11 of 31.

    The margin reached 26 points early in the second half before the Gators cooled off. They shot only 39 percent after halftime, and the Aggies cut the margin to 73-61 with 2:12 left.

    Texas A&M's comeback bid ended when Walker sank a 3-pointer, then made two free throws.

    The Aggies missed their first seven shots. By the time Middleton scored their first basket eight minutes into the game, Florida had seven field goals, including a pair of 3-pointers.

    The Gators increased their lead to 37-16, with 15 of those points coming off turnovers.

    Southern Mississippi beats Mississippi 86-82

    HATTIESBURG, Miss. (AP) -- Angelo Johnson scored 23 points, Neil Watson added 18 and Southern Mississippi beat Mississippi 86-82 on Saturday.

    Southern Miss (8-2) led for much of the second half but Ole Miss' Terrance Henry tied the game at 76 on a pair of free throws with 1:53 remaining. Watson responded with a 3-pointer to give the Golden Eagles a 79-76 lead and Torye Pelham added an emphatic one-handed jam on the next possession to seal the victory.

    Southern Miss shot 49.2 percent from the field (30 of 61), including 53.3 percent (8 of 15) from 3-point range.

    Ole Miss (9-2) was led by Henry's 26 points. He shot 10 of 14 from the field. Dundrecous Nelson scored 19 points and Jarvis Summers added 12.

    It was the first meeting between the two teams in Hattiesburg since 1994. The loss snapped Ole Miss' six-game winning streak.

    Indiana State upsets No. 25 Vanderbilt, 61-55

    NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) -- Steve McWhorter hit two free throws with 3:32 left to put Indiana State ahead for good and the Sycamores upset No. 25 Vanderbilt 61-55 Saturday for their first win over a ranked team since 2006.

    Indiana State (8-2) earned its fifth win in 12 games against Southeastern Conference teams and first since beating Vanderbilt on Dec. 22, 1984, in Terre Haute. The Sycamores are off to their best start since opening 8-1 in 2005-06.

    RJ Mahurin had a career-high 14 points off the bench, and Carl Richard and Jordan Printy each finished with 11. Jake Odum added 10 for the Sycamores, whose last win over a ranked team came on their own court against No. 14 Butler on Dec. 12, 2006.

    Vanderbilt (6-4) lost its third non-conference game at home this season. The Commodores hadn't played since beating Davidson 87-83 on the road Dec. 7, which put them back into the Top 25.

    The 10-day break for finals was so filled with exams that Vanderbilt coach Kevin Stallings had trouble scheduling practices and often didn't have all his players on the court when he did. John Jenkins, the Southeastern Conference's leading scorer last season and averaging a league-best 21.3 points this season, was held to 11.

    Looking rusty, Vanderbilt fell behind by 12 early. The Commodores scored only once after Lance Goulbourne's three-point play with 6:32 left, and Jeffery Taylor's layup with 53.2 seconds remaining just wasn't enough.

    Taylor finished with 21 points and Brad Tinsley had 12.

    The Sycamores led by as many as 12 in the first half and nine in the second half. Vanderbilt rallied to take the lead each time and led by as much as 53-45 with 6:32 left on Goulbourne's three-point play. The Commodores then went cold and shot so poorly late that fans started heading for the exits in the final minute.

    Printy hit a 3-pointer, then McWhorter put Indiana State ahead to stay with his free throws. Odum scored four of his 11 points in the final 2:44 to help seal the win.

    Indiana State outshot Vanderbilt 43.1 percent (22 of 51) to 38 percent (19 of 50), and the Sycamores were even better from 3-point range. They hit 10 of 21 compared to Vandy's 6 of 22. Jenkins, leading the nation with 3.9 3-pointers per game, was just 1 of 6 beyond the arc.

    The Commodores struggled shooting even at the free throw line, hitting only 11 of 18.

    With the game tied at 28 at halftime, Indiana State scored 10 of the first 11 points to open the second half and led 38-29 on a fast-break layup by Odum.

    Taylor started a 12-0 run with a 3, a pair of free throws, another 3 and then a high-flying dunk off a steal by Tinsley that had fans roaring. Tinsley then scored on a layup for a 41-38 lead with 15:21 left. Vanderbilt grabbed its biggest lead at 53-45 but didn't score again until it was too late.

    Ward leads Auburn past North Florida 84-71

    AUBURN, Ala. (AP) -- Varez Ward scored 17 points and Kenny Gabriel had Auburn's first double-double of the season as the Tigers pulled away at the end of an 84-71 win over North Florida on Saturday night.

    Auburn (6-1) is off to its best start since the 2003-04 team opened 7-1.

    The Tigers led 71-69 with 3:42 to go when Josh Wallace hit a layup and Frankie Sullivan knocked down all three free throws after being fouled on a 3-pointer with 2:33 left..

    Gabriel finished with 15 points and 13 rebounds, Chris Denson scored 14 and Sullivan had 13.

    Travis Wallace led the Ospreys (5-6) with 13 points.

    Foul trouble was a theme throughout the evening, as the teams combined to commit 56 fouls and shoot 68 free throws.

    Neither had much success from the line, though, as Auburn hit 28 of 43 (65.1 percent) and North Florida was 11 of 25 (44.0 percent).

    No. 3 Kentucky beats Tennessee-Chattanooga 87-62

    LEXINGTON, Ky. (AP) -- Doron Lamb scored 24 points and No. 3 Kentucky bounced back from its first loss of the season, beating Tennessee-Chattanooga 87-62 on Saturday night despite an injury to forward Terrence Jones.

    Voted preseason All-America, Jones spent much of the game on the bench after dislocating a finger on his left hand early in the first half. He checked back in but played only 10 minutes. He finished with no points and one rebound.

    Still, the Wildcats (9-1) opened with 13 unanswered points in their first game since a 73-72 defeat at Indiana last Saturday knocked them from the nation's top ranking. The Mocs (3-8) never came within single digits after that, and Kentucky cruised to its 40th consecutive victory at home.

    Kentucky freshman Anthony Davis had 14 points, 18 rebounds and five blocks. The Wildcats shot 48.5 percent from the floor, including 12 of 33 from 3-point range.

    Without Jones' presence inside, Kentucky relied more heavily on 3-pointers than usual. In the second half, 17 of its 30 field goal attempts were from beyond the arc.

    Lamb, who finished 10 of 17 from the floor and 4 of 9 from behind the 3-point line, was one of five Wildcats in double figures.

    Zlovaric Drazen finished with 15 points and nine rebounds for Tennessee-Chattanooga.

    Trailing 20-9, the Mocs were held scoreless for 5 minutes as Kentucky put the game out of reach.

    Caldwell-Pope leads Georgia over USC 63-59

    LOS ANGELES (AP) -- Kentavious Caldwell-Pope scored 21 points and hit a key late 3-pointer to help Georgia beat USC 63-59 on Saturday in a rare West Coast appearance for the Bulldogs.

    Caldwell-Pope, a freshman, hit four 3-pointers, and Gerald Robinson scored 17 points for Georgia (5-5), which snapped a four-game losing skid.

    The Bulldogs, one of worst-shooting teams in the nation, shot a season-high 51 percent. They made 9 of 13 3-pointers.

    Alexis Moore scored 18 points to lead USC (4-7), while Maurice Jones had 11. Aaron Fuller added 10 points.

    Caldwell-Pope made a 3-pointer to put Georgia up 60-56 with 43 seconds left. He later added a pair of insurance free throws.

    Kansas State beats No. 23 Alabama, 71-58

    KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) -- Jordan Henriquez scored a career-high 17 points, Angel Rodriguez added a career-best 13 and Kansas State beat No. 23 Alabama 71-58 at the Sprint Center on Saturday night.

    Jamar Samuels added 14 points for the Wildcats (7-1), who used a 19-6 run midway through the second half to avoid going to overtime for the third consecutive game. Kansas State lost to West Virginia in two extra sessions last week and needed overtime to beat North Florida last Sunday.

    JaMychal Green scored 20 points for Alabama (8-3), which has lost three of four.

    Trevor Releford, who grew up in suburban Kansas City and attended Bishop Miege High School, added 14 points for the Crimson Tide in a homecoming that would have been much more memorable had they been as stingy over the final 30 minutes as they were over the first 10 minutes.

    The Wildcats started 2 of 18 from the field, struggling against Alabama's tenacious, trapping half-court defense. They only trailed by seven, though, when they finally figured out how to get open shots along the baseline, and that opened up holes elsewhere.

    Kansas State was still clinging to a 38-37 lead with just more than 13 minutes left when Samuels hit a 3-pointer off a feed from Rodriguez, one of his career-best seven assists. Shane Southwell scored moments later, Samuels added a pair of free throws and Rodriguez scored after a nifty behind-the-back move that got him open in the lane to make it 49-39 with less than 10 minutes to play.

    The lead swelled to 61-45 when Henriquez scored back-to-back baskets and Thomas Gipson added a tough bucket in the paint. The Crimson Tide never got close the rest of the way.

    Kansas State sealed the game with free throws down the stretch.

    The game matched a pair of head coaches in Alabama's Anthony Grant and Kansas State's Frank Martin who were teammates at Miami (Fla.) Senior High School, where they met as sophomores. In fact, Grant is the godfather of Martin's eldest child, Brandon, and they remain good friends.

    That doesn't mean they wanted to win any less than usual.

    Both coaches spent the majority of the game riding the officials, riding their own players -- more or less yelling at anyone within earshot -- and coaching with the passion of March in mid-December.

    Alabama, one of the nation's best defensive teams, held the Wildcats to two field goals over the first 10 minutes, slowly building a meager lead. Tony Mitchell's first basket with 9:08 left in the half made it 15-8, the Crimson Tide's biggest lead of the game.

    The Wildcats still trailed 17-12 with less than 5 minutes left when Martavious Irving scored and Rodriguez fed Henriquez for an easy dunk, starting a 14-7 run to end the half. Henriquez's bucket with 18 seconds remaining allowed Kansas State to take a 26-24 lead into the break.

    The game was being played at a pace that favored Grant's Crimson Tide, who came in allowing an average of just more than 55 points per game -- 11th-best in the nation. But the Wildcats heated up in the second half, blowing past that number with 7 minutes left.

    They wound up shooting 44 percent from the field.