OXFORD, Miss. (Ole Miss Sports/WTVA) - The Ole Miss women's basketball team came up short against a high-powered Troy team, falling 71-54 to the Trojans at The Pavilion on Wednesday night.
The Rebels (5-8) received another 20-point outing from senior Crystal Allen (20 points, four rebounds, four assists, one steal) and were able to hold a potent Troy (8-2) offense below their season average of 82.8 points per game, but the Trojans proved why they belong near the top of several national statistical categories with a complete team win tonight – highlighted by a big advantage in rebounds (53-31). Entering tonight, Troy ranked as the NCAA's top rebounding team overall at 51.1 boards per game, as well as the nation's top offensive rebounding unit at 23.0 per game.
"I was disappointed once again by our rebounding efforts," said Ole Miss head coach Yolett McPhee-McCuin. "I think that had a lot to do with why we didn't have success tonight."
Ole Miss fought stride-for-stride for much of the game while trying to slow down the fast-paced and athletic Trojan offense, despite falling down early in the first quarter. Crystal Allen put on a spectacular run by herself, scoring eight unanswered – including a buzzer-beater three-pointer – to close an already-large Troy advantage to just 21-17 at the end of the first quarter. Troy won each quarter tonight, but none by more than five points as the Rebels stayed in the hunt down the stretch.
The Rebels hit five total buzzer beaters tonight and shot above 39 percent for the ninth time this season (39.3), but Troy shot an Ole Miss opponent season high 41.2 percent from three on 7-of-17 shooting. Five Trojans hauled in at least six rebounds and four scored in double-digits, led by Kayla Robinson's 16 points – which included a 3-of-5 clip from beyond the arc. Troy scored a season-high for Rebel opponents in second-chance points, putting away 24 points on 28 offensive boards.
For Allen, it's her fourth 20-point game of the season and her 11th in double-digits. Her season average now stands at 17.0 PPG, currently the sixth best in the SEC.
Other Rebels chipping in included Shandricka Sessom (nine points, six rebounds), Mimi Reid (nine points, four rebounds, four assists, two steals) and La'Karis Salter (six points, five rebounds, one assist, one steal).
Ole Miss now receives nine days off for the holidays before returning to The Pavilion to host North Florida on Dec. 28. Tipoff is set for 1 p.m. CT.