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OXFORD, Miss. (AP) — Mississippi coach Andy Kennedy and guard Terence Davis managed to agree on one thing Friday: The Rebels are excited to reach the Southeastern Conference portion of the schedule on a high note after defeating Bradley 82-59.
Davis scored 25 points and was 9 of 14 from the field as Ole Miss (7-5) raced to a 40-22 halftime lead. The Rebels led by as many as 30 points, 67-37 midway through the second half. Markel Crawford and Bruce Stevens added 16 and 11 points, respectively..
"I know our mind set is right where it needs to be going into the (Southeastern) conference," Davis said. "We've been looking forward to these games."
"They're excited," said Kennedy, whose club lost three overtime home games earlier in the month. "What I hope we've learned is there is a thin line between winning and misery. It's a play here, a play there. It's important to get a win like this one."
Bradley (10-3) was led by Darrell Brown with 16 points and five assists.
The Braves struggled from the field, hitting 20 of 61 (35 percent) and 8 of 23 (33 percent) from 3-point range.
Ole Miss was 29 of 63 (46 percent) from the field, including 12 of 27 (44 percent) from the 3-point line. The Rebels forced Bradley into 22 turnovers and got a game-high eight rebounds from Justas Furmanavicius.
Bradley: The Braves were picked seventh in the Missouri Valley Conference preseason coaches poll, but were riding a three-game winning streak in a promising 10-2 start. None of those positives materialized in their first game against a Power Five conference opponent. Brown, a 5-10 sophomore guard, was the only effective weapon.
Ole Miss: The Rebels have won three of four games and rediscovered their 3-point shot heading into Southeastern Conference play. After hitting 14 shots from 3-point range in the previous game, the Rebels followed up by hitting 8 of 14 early on Bradley, including 5 of 7 from Davis. The Ole Miss bench outscored Bradley 41-19 and outscored the Braves in the paint, 32-12.
FRIGID FIRST HALF
Bradley entered as one of four schools nationally to make 40 percent of its 3-point shots and hold opponents to under 30 percent. At halftime, the Braves trailed by 20 points, was 1 of 8 (13 percent) from 3-point range and had surrendered 8 of 16 (50 percent) to the Rebels. Aside from Brown, the Braves finished the first half 2 of 18 (11 percent) from the field, including 0 of 6 from 3-point range.
Bradley: The Braves open Missouri Valley Conference play at Drake Thursday.
Ole Miss: The Rebels host South Carolina on Sunday in the SEC opener for both teams.