OXFORD – The 3-point streak is over for Ole Miss point guard Chris Warren, but a new streak begins.
The Rebels are 2-0.
Ole Miss contested every shot by Murray State and held the Racers to 30.2 percent field goal shooting while gaining a 39-30 edge on the boards.
Warren had hit a 3-point basket in every college game he’d played, a school-record streak of 46 games that was also the longest among active SEC players and within 14 games of the all-time SEC mark.
Ole Miss students, aware of Warren’s streak, chanted “3, 3, 3” when he touched the ball in the final 2 minutes as the Rebels’ lead hovered around 20 points.
Warren attempted two 3s then but got neither to fall. He launched from long range with 19 seconds remaining, his last attempt.
“I heard the fans yelling that and was surprised they knew it,” Kennedy said. “We tried to run a little action for him at the end, but Trevor (Gaskins) shot it.”
Warren had been the hottest hand in a 68-60 win over Arkansas State last Friday, the score was much more balanced Wednesday – and timely as the Rebels stretched an 11-point halftime advantage.
Warren was 0 for 4 from the arc and finished with 10 in the game. Zach Graham had 22 points and Nick Williams 21 to lead Ole Miss. It was a career-high for both, and they were a combined 5 for 6 from 3-point range.
Williams scored 19 points against Wisconsin two years ago while a freshman at Indiana.
Murray State (1-1) returned the nucleus of last year’s 31-win team that upset Vanderbilt in the NCAA tournament and came within one field goal of upsetting Butler to advance to the Sweet 16.
“Murray State was an NCAA tournament team last year. We came out and we popped them, and we played with confidence,” Graham said. “We played competitively. Now we have a long stretch of games coming up, and we have to transfer this to the next game.”
Warren seemed bothered by Murray’s pressure at times in the first half. He had six turnovers but none after halftime when he adjusted to the pace.
As Warren attracted Murray’s attention, the biggest thing he did was find his teammates. He had five assists.
Murray held Ole Miss without a field goal for a stretch of 10 minutes, 32 seconds in the first half. But the Rebels’ defense had a shut-down stretch of its own. Ole Miss closed with a 13-2 run to lead 34-23 at the break.
The sparring continued in the second half, but when Warren found Reggie Buckner for an easy basket with 18:13 left, it was an 11-point Ole Miss lead.
The Ole Miss lead peaked at 23 with 3:37 remaining.
Parrish Alford/NEMS Daily Journal