Morgan William faked as is if she might drive to the basket, but she stepped back to hit a jumper with three seconds left to play to give No. 18 Mississippi State a 64-62 win over the Ole Miss Rebels Thursday in Oxford, the twentieth victory of the season for the Bulldogs.
Mississippi State took the lead 40-37 on a three-pointer from Victoria Vivians with 16:33 to play in the game, and they never trailed after that point.
That did not mean that the game would end without drama. Ole Miss tied the game at 60-60 on a free throw from Shequlla Johnson with one minute left in the game.
On the Bulldogs' next possession, Vivians drove through the lane, drawing a foul and a trip to free throw line, where the freshman would sink both to put Mississippi State ahead 62-60 with 47 seconds to play.
The Rebels (14-6, 4-3) failed to score on their next possession thanks to defense from Martha Alwal, but the Bulldogs turned the ball over while heading up the court to give Ole Miss new life. The Rebels took advantage of the opportunity, tying the game at 62-62 with 14 seconds left after a layup by Danielle McCray.
Mississippi State (20-2, 5-2) coach Vic Schaefer decided not to use one of his remaining timeouts after the basket, allowing the Bulldogs to move the ball up the court, and William rewarded the decision with the game-winning basket.
Breanna Richardson led four Bulldogs in double digits with 16 points, and she pulled in four rebounds. William tallied 14 points, as did Alwal, who also pulled down a team-high five rebounds. Vivians finished the contest with ten points.
The Bulldogs return to action Monday with a road trip to Auburn