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Middle Tennessee State upsets Mississippi 65-62

Middle Tennessee State upsets Mississippi 65-62

MURFREESBORO, Tenn. (AP) Kerry Hammonds' baseline jump shot with 40 seconds remaining and late foul shots, and Middle Tennessee State handed Mississippi its first loss of the season with a 65-62 win on Saturday.

Marcos Knight's 14 points led the Blue Raiders (7-2). Hammonds' shot broke a 59-59 tie, and MTSU made 4-of-6 free throws to finish off the win.

Ole Miss, which had the nation's best turnover margin, committed a season-high 18 turnovers against MTSU's swarming defense. And the Rebels, ranked second nationally in scoring (87-point average), never found an offensive rhythm.

MTSU beat Southeastern Conference opponents in back-to-back seasons for the first time in program history. The Blue Raiders defeated Ole Miss in last year's regular season and beat Tennessee in the National Invitational Tournament. It was MTSU's first home win over an SEC team since beating Vanderbilt 93-90 in overtime on Feb. 1, 1995.

Raymond Cintron had 10 points on 3-of-4 3-pointers for MTSU.

Ole Miss sharp-shooter Marshall Henderson was held to only two points in the first half, and MTSU went ahead 33-29 at halftime. Henderson finished with a game-high 17 points to for the Rebels (6-1), who played their first road game of the season. Murphy Holloway and Nick Williams added 11 points apiece.

Ole Miss led most of the first half until MTSU's 11-0 run turned the tide. Bruce Massey picked an Ole Miss pocket for one of his three steals to set up J.T. Sulton's layup and foul for a three-point play. Massey's missed layup was then followed by Shawn Jones for a put back dunk. Cintron followed with a 3-pointer, and another Ole Miss turnover led to Trantell Knight's three-point play for a 33-26 lead. MTSU was up 33-29 at the break.

Ole Miss took back the lead with a seven-point spurt, as Henderson's 3-pointer pushed it to 38-35 early in the second half. MTSU countered with back-to-back 3-pointers by Cintron and Hammonds to ultimately go ahead 47-42 at the 11:30 media timeout.

Ole Miss erased MTSU's 59-52 lead with seven straight points in only 86 seconds, capped by Henderson's game-tying 3-pointer from 25 feet with 2:06 remaining.

Hammonds buried the go-ahead jumper over Henderson, who slipped trying to defend penetration, for a 61-59 lead. On the other end, Holloway missed a wide-open 3-pointer.

MTSU's Sulton made two foul shots, and both Massey and Cintron hit 1-of-2 from the line to secure the victory.

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Tom Haberstroh believes Wizards' Rui Hachimura should be NBA All-Rookie First Team

Tom Haberstroh believes Wizards' Rui Hachimura should be NBA All-Rookie First Team

Rui Hachimura has had an impressive rookie season, even if there were some struggles along the way. But, was his first NBA campaign impressive enough to land an NBA All-Rookie First Team nod?

According to NBC Sports' Tom Haberstroh, the answer is a clear yes.

“He does, in my book he’s first-team all-rookie," Haberstroh said Sunday on NBC Sports Washington's Wizards Pregame Live.

RELATED: BEAL THINKS RUI WILL BE SF LONG TERM

Haberstroh understands that Hachimura may not get the same attention as other big-name rookies such as Zion Williamson or Ja Morant, but that shouldn't take away from his body of work. Though there were some tough showings at points during the campaign, which is to be expected, Hachimura established himself as a solid scorer. 

Yet, what is more impressive to Haberstroh than the 13.4 points per game as a rookie is how Hachimura kept that scoring total despite Washington's situation. The forward was thrown right into the middle of a young roster and asked to create shots. The analyst also noted that Hachimura started playing the sport of basketball at a much later age than other rookies and he's still competing at the same level.

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Hachimura also didn't have the luxury of John Wall, a point guard who could've helped him find more shot opportunities. For times throughout the season, he was asked to be one of "the guys" in Washington, which is no easy task for a rookie. When looking at what he did and who he did it with, Haberstroh thinks the All-Rookie honor makes sense. 

“The minutes that he played, the consistency from a scoring standpoint and the fact that he didn’t have a true playmaker to work with, John Wall out for the season," Haberstroh said. “It’s really been an impressive year for Rui Hachimura and I think he’s done a very, very good job considering the environment that seemed like guys were dropping left and right.”

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‘Stephen Strasburg’ the dog catches first pitch for Stephen Strasburg’s first start

‘Stephen Strasburg’ the dog catches first pitch for Stephen Strasburg’s first start

Stephen Strasburg made his 2020 debut Sunday after missing the first two and a half weeks of the season with a nerve issue in his throwing hand. But before he could take the mound, the Nationals put up a video on the jumbotron of another Stephen Strasburg catching the first pitch.

“Stephen Strasburg” was adopted from the Humane Rescue Center by Nationals fan Mary Elizabeth Pratt just before last fall’s World Series. Her pitch was a little bit outside but Stephen had no problem scooping it up and running it back over to her.

The baseball-playing Stephen Strasburg is coming off a year in which he won World Series MVP honors and signed a seven-year extension to remain with the Nationals.

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