OXFORD, Miss. — A poor shooting performance and an off night from leading scorer Saben Lee led to Vanderbilt’s demise in a 86-60 loss to Ole Miss on Saturday at the Pavilion.
Lee finished with 10 points on 3 of 6 shooting. Ejike Obinna led the Commodores (9-20, 1-15 SEC) with 13 – one short of his career-high – and Scotty Pippen Jr. chipped in 11. As a team, Vandy shot 33.9 percent from the floor.
“Just attention to the details that we talked about before the game,” Vanderbilt head coach Jerry Stackhouse said about his unit’s performance. “We weren’t really good all day – I don’t know if it was the early start or whatever. We just got to try to shake it off and get better.
“I thought that this would be a game that would be much better contested than what it turned out to be. Give (Ole Miss coach) Kermit (Davis) and those guys credit – they come out and played really well.”
The Rebels (13-15, 4-11 SEC) began Saturday on a 13-1 run in the first four minutes as Vandy missed its first five shots. Pippen’s 3 from the right wing at the 15:44 mark finally broke the scoring drought.
The Dores came back with three straight 3s and were within 13-10 on a Pippen bucket that bounced around the rim before going in. Braelee Albert then joined the fun with a 3 of his own before an Ole Miss turnover turned into a Jordan Wright dunk making it 15-13 Commodores.
Ole Miss scored five straight to break a 17-17 tie and was up 22-17 on Devontae Shuler’s triple from the left wing. The Rebels then put together a 16-2 run minutes later and built a 40-24 lead while Vandy missed 8 of 9 shots and went without a field goal for more than 3 1/2 minutes.
Vanderbilt went into the break down 43-27 and shot just 32.3 percent. The Rebels got 18 of their points from inside the paint and shot 54.8 percent from the field.
“Defensively, we never really set the tone of what we were trying to do,” Stackhouse said. “We came in with a little bit different of a gameplan than what we normally do and because of (Breein) Tyree and Shuler’s ability we wanted to try to get the ball out of their hands. Once we did we were kind of banking on the other guys not making plays – those guys stepped up and made plays. (Blake) Hinson had a great game for ‘em. Then those guys got going a little bit.
“Then for us just rebounding the basketball was, again, a problem for us. Early in the game we just got find a way to rebound better.
Ole Miss built the margin out to 21 early in the second half on an Austin Crowley 3 that made it 57-36. With 12 1/2 minutes to play, KJ Buffen cut to the hole for an easy layup to put Ole Miss ahead 63-40.
The Commodores couldn’t keep up.
Five Rebels finished in double figures led by Shuler’s 18 and Ole Miss racked up 26 assists.
“I think we’ve been playing pretty good. Even though we haven’t been winning games we’ve been have been playing pretty good and doing some good things,” Stackhouse said. “I think this is probably one of the first games where I felt that we didn’t get better.”
Vanderbilt next travels to Alabama (15-13, 7-8 SEC) for a 7:30 p.m. game Wednesday.
• Lee (1,251) now needs two points to pass Brad Tinsley (1,252) for 30th on Vanderbilt’s all-time scoring list. Jermaine Beal is 29th (1,253) and Jeff Turner is 28th (1,271).
• Junior forward Matthew Moyer (shoulder) missed his fourth-straight game for Vanderbilt.
• The Commodores now lead the series with Ole Miss 76-46 but still trails the series against the Rebels 32-27 on the road.
• Vanderbilt is now 1-12 this season when trailing at halftime, 1-17 when trailing with five minutes remaining, 0-18 when trailing with two minutes remaining, 0-15 when shooting less than 40 percent, 0-14 when scoring less than 70 points and 4-17 when getting our-rebounded.
• Attendance on Saturday was announced as 7,495.