By Parrish Alford/NEMS Daily Journal
OXFORD – Marshall Henderson scored 27 points Tuesday night, but it was his passing, not his shooting that helped Ole Miss get on its roll.
The Rebels trailed by eight against Coastal Carolina late in the first half, but outscored the Chanticleers by 26 the rest of the way en route to a 90-72 win before 3,059 fans at Tad Smith Coliseum.
Henderson, the junior college transfer who had 22 points in his debut last Friday, scored 13 in the first half, but that wasn’t enough for the lead.
The Rebels scored the last five of the first half to trail 39-36 at the break.
It was Henderson’s two big assists, one finished by Reggie Buckner, the other by Aaron Jones, that helped Ole Miss (2-0) push its lead to 55-47 with just over 13 minutes to play.
Minutes later Henderson hit 3-pointers on successive trips, the second drawing a foul at the 7:31 mark. He came back to hit the free throw, but before then was raising his arms to the crowd, encouraging it to get loud.
“We knew they were going to come out and give us a game, but we didn’t take it to heart like we should have,” Henderson said. “Coach Kennedy came out and lit a fire under us in the locker room.”
Coastal Carolina (1-1) had an eight-rebound edge in the first half, but the Rebels were plus-3 in the second half.
The Rebels shot 50.8 percent from the floor and held Coastal to 35.5 percent shooting in the second half.
Three other players scored in double figures including Murphy Holloway with 15, Nick Williams with 11 and Aaron Jones with 10.
Kennedy used a number of player combinations but said that will change soon.
Freshman Derrick Millinghaus started in place of Jarvis Summers at the point due to Summers missing practice with a slight knee injury.
Summers had nine points, six assists and no turnovers in 24 minutes.