SEC Wins the 2022 Big 12/SEC Challenge
For the second straight year in a row, the SEC has won the annual Big 12/SEC Challenge, finishing 6-4. Alabama, Kentucky and Auburn highlighted the day with huge wins, while LSU and Tennessee fell short on the road. Check out the highlights from all of Saturday's action.
After Alabama's letdown loss to Georgia on Tuesday night, the Crimson Tide knew they had a tough challenge on Saturday as the No. 4 Baylor Bear traveled to Tuscaloosa. Nate Oats and the Tide pulled off the upset over the defending national champions with a bit of teamwork. Despite the 3-point struggles, the Tide scored 42 points in the paint and assisted 16-of-29 on made field goals. It has been a roller coaster of a season for Alabama; maybe this will be the game that turns the season around.
John Calipari and the Kentucky Wildcats dominated the Kansas Jayhawks at Allen Fieldhouse. The Wildcat's offense was lights out as they shot for 50.8% in the first half and had a 21 point lead at the half. The Jayhawks struggled defensively and behind the arc, which resulted in a rough day for Bill Self's team.
Florida-81 Oklahoma State-72
The Florida Gators came back from a 16 point deficit in the first half to beat the Cowboys. The Gators outscored the Cowboys in the second half 49-27 and went 26-of-32 shooting from the line. Oklahoma State shot 63 percent in the first half but dropped to 29 in the second as the Cowboys look to end their three-game losing streak.
Ole Miss-67 Kansas State-56
The Ole Miss Rebels pulled off the upset at home over Kansas State. The Rebels went 15-of-20 from the free-throw line and had a 32-14 advantage in the paint. Daeshun Ruffin scored 17 points, with 13 in the second half, to help get the win over the Wildcats..
Arkansas-77 West Virginia-68
The Razorbacks and Mountaineers went wire-to-wire for the SEC/Big 12 challenge. Arkansas never trailed in the game as Au'Diese Toney scored 19 points to give the team their sixth straight win. The Razorbacks are now 2-0 against West Virginia, with their first meeting in the Old Spice Championship in 2006.
The No. 1 team in the country handled its business as Oklahoma came to town. Jabri Smith scored 23 points, went 6-for-14 on field goals, and was 90% at the free-throw line. The Sooners seemed to have gotten lost in the Jungle as Auburn ran away with the game in the second half. The Tigers continue their 18 game winning streak and will welcome the Tide on Tuesday night.
Will Wade and the LSU Tigers traveled to Fort Worth, Texas, to take on the TCU Horned Frogs. The Frogs wanted to start hot after last week's embarrassing loss to Texas. LSU struggled throughout the game and gave the Frogs the largest lead, 50-34 in the second half. LSU put pressure on TCU as they tried to make a comeback but fell short on the road.
Iowa State-67 Missouri -50
The Iowa State Cyclones outlasts the Missouri Tigers to get a win for the Big 12. Izaiah Brockington scored 15 points and made all eight of his free throws. The Cyclones shot 58% in the second half and forced 18 turnovers as they started to take control of the game. Missouri missed 10 of its first 11 shots to start the second half. The Tigers have now lost five of their last six games.
Texas Tech-76 Mississippi State-50
The Texas Tech Raiders dominated the Mississippi State Bulldogs at home. The Raiders shot a season-high of 61.7% and forced the Bulldogs a season-high of 22 turnovers. The Raiders stay undefeated at home and get a nice win for the Big 12. The Bulldogs will try to rebound against South Carolina on Tuesday.
Rick Barnes went up against his former team in Austin as the Texas Longhorns looked to pull the upset. Tennessee struggled to get anything going in the first half and found themselves behind 15 points. In the last 10 minutes of the game, the Vols were able to tie up the game, but Texas was able to shoot from the free-throw line to give the Longhorns the lead. The Vols tried to convert but ran out of time, giving Texas the upset.
It was a fun, action-packed day for SEC hoops. There were dominating performances and many upsets. Several teams walked away with bragging rights for an entire year, while others have to sit in the corner of shame. Will the SEC make it a three-peat next year?
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