By Parrish Alford/NEMS Daily Journal
NEW ORLEANS – When Terrance Henry was shooting free throws in the final seconds, there was no better player to have on the line for Ole Miss in the eyes of Murphy Holloway.
“Terrance led us. It’s his last year, and he knows what we expect from him.”
What the Rebels expect – and what they need from Henry – was a while in coming in their 77-72 overtime win against Tennessee in the SEC tournament quarterfinals.
Henry missed his first four shots of the second half and was just 2 for 9 from the floor when he converted a three-point play with a driving layup and free throw to give Ole Miss a 58-56 lead with 2 minutes, 20 seconds left in regulation.
Henry converted a short jump shot for a four-point lead with 2:29 left in overtime, but his biggest contribution was hitting free throws at the end. Henry was 5 for 6 from the free throw line in the extra period and 3 for 4 in the last 11 seconds. His only miss came after his fifth free throw had given Ole Miss a five-point lead, and only 1 second remained on the clock.
When Tennessee was in fouling mode, the Rebels worked hard to get the ball in Henry’s hands.
Though he struggled from the field, Henry finished 10 for 12 from the free throw line and scored a team-high 19 points.
A day after scoring a career-high 22 points, Nick Williams was scoreless in the first half and finished with just five points. But Ole Miss didn’t miss his offense too badly thanks to Jarvis Summers.
The freshman point guard from McComb scored 17 points, a good seven points above his season average entering the game. His jumper early in overtime gave the Rebels the lead for good at 65-63.
“Our young guys have been stepping up with Jarvis, he’s been great the whole season,” senior Terrance Henry said.
Summers shot 5 of 10 from the floor and committed just two turnovers. He’s scored 29 points in two SEC Tournament games and is averaging 14 points over the last four contests.
Tennessee never really could figure out the 2-3 zone Ole Miss employed.
UT coach Cuonzo Martin didn’t want his team settling for jump shots, but they did so early and often. The Volunteers shot 23.1 percent in the first half and 28.1 percent for the game. They made 11 of 34 from 3-point range.
“Cam Tatum and Trae (Golden), they’re good at attacking off the bounce, but I don’t think we did a very good job of using our dribble to get in the lane,” Martin said.
Skylar McBee hit five of Tennessee’s 3-pointers, one of which sent the game into overtime. And in the extra period, he accounted for two of the Vols’ three field goals.
“We just couldn’t hit shots,” Tatum said. “And if we hit shots in the zone, you get teams to come out and extend more, and that gives you the opportunity to drive the ball better.”