OXFORD, Miss. (AP) — Shakira Austin scored 21 points and grabbed 12 rebounds and Mississippi ended a six-game losing streak with a 72-60 upset of No. 15 Kentucky on Thursday night.
It was just the second Ole Miss win over a ranked team in the 16 matchups under third-year coach Yolett McPhee-McCuin. The other was also a win over Kentucky, then No. 16, in the 2018-19 season. The Rebels had lost 13 straight since, all against SEC rivals.
The Wildcats never really got untracked, falling behind by 13 points at halftime and shooting 32% (21 of 66). It was their second chilly outing in a row. Kentucky shot 36.5% in a win over Missouri on Sunday and a week before that shot a season-low 29% in a loss to Tennessee.
Mimi Reid added 14 points for Ole Miss (8-7, 2-7 SEC) and Donnetta Johnson 12.
Rhyne Howard scored 26 points with 10 rebounds for the Wildcats (14-4, 6-3) and Chasity Patterson 14. Patterson was 6 of 9 while her teammates were 15 of 57 (26%). Howard was 7 of 26, including 2 of 10 from 3-point range.
Kentucky scored the first seven points of the third quarter and made it a 12-2 run to close within 43-40 but Ole Miss regrouped, starting with a three-point play by Valerie Nesbitt and pushed the lead back to 10.
Howard scored all 13 UK points in the fourth quarter, cutting the deficit to five four times but the Wildcats were just 4-of-17 shooting
Ole Miss rolled to a 41-28 lead at the half, shooting 51.5% (17 of 33) while outrebounding the Wildcats, who were 10 of 30 from the field, 24-12. Austin led the way with 17 points on 6-of-8 shooting.
The Wildcats are scheduled to play No. 18 Tennessee next Thursday when the Rebels head to Alabama.
More AP women’s college basketball: https://apnews.com/hub/womens-college-basketball and https://twitter.com/AP_Top25.