Ole Miss, Boise State out to finish strong in Charleston tournament

NCAA Basketball

Ole Miss and Boise State both hope to leave the Shriners Children’s Charleston Classic at Charleston, S.C., on a two-game winning streak when they meet in the fifth-place game on Sunday.

The Rebels (3-1) and Broncos (2-2) bounced back from losses in their tournament openers with consolation-bracket victories on Friday, with Ole Miss knocking off Elon 74-56 and Boise State taking care of Temple 82-62.

Ole Miss rebounded from its first loss of the season — 78-72 to Marquette — by jumping to a 37-21 lead at halftime and leading by as many as 22 points.

Jaemyn Brakefield scored 16 points on 4-for-8 shooting from the field and 5-for-6 from the free-throw line for the Rebels. Jarkel Joiner added 16 points, and Robert Allen grabbed eight rebounds as the Rebels outrebounded the Phoenix 42-30.

“It’s just preparation,” Brakefield told reporters. “We knew this was a bounce-back game and that Elon was a great team. Really just coming into it on the short day we had to prepare for it, we keyed in on everything.”

The Rebels shot 49.1 percent (26-for-53) from the field, but they struggled mightily from 3-point range (4-for-13) and from the free-throw line (18-for-28). But Ole Miss forced Elon into 17 turnovers, which it converted into 15 points.

Boise State also had little trouble on Friday after opening the tournament with a 67-61 loss to No. 22 St. Bonaventure a day earlier.

Against Temple, the Broncos led by 15 points at the break and by as many as 34 in the second half, as four Broncos scored in double figures.

Emmanuel Akot scored a team-high 16 points that included him going 4-for-6 from beyond the arc, while Abu Kigab added 13 points and five rebounds and Mladen Armus posted 11 points. Marcus Shaver contributed 10.

The Broncos shot 53.3 percent (32-for-60) from the field and were nearly as good on their 3-point shots, going 12-for-23 (52.2 percent). Boise State recorded 25 assists, with Akot and Kigab each posting a game-high six.

“We want to be able to trust each other and make each other better — that’s the key to our season, trust each other and get the ball moving like that,” Boise State coach Leon Rice told reporters. “We had just tremendous possessions where we’d make a good play and then make a good pass and then make the extra, extra pass.

“We certainly made each other better tonight. I mean 25 assists — that’s a lot.”

Boise State held the Owls to 41.7 percent (20-for-48) shooting, including 6-for-18 (33.3 percent) from long distance. The Broncos converted 17 turnovers into 23 points and outscored the Owls 36-22 in the paint.

–Field Level Media

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