SEC tourney, Day 3: Kentucky, Tennessee, Missouri eliminated


Alabama guard Retin Obasohan heads to the basket as Tennessee forward Jarnell Stokes defends during the first half at the Southeastern Conference Tournament on Friday in Nashville, Tenn. Alabama won 58-48 and faces Florida in the semifinals on Saturday. (AP Photo/John Bazemore)

Published: Friday, March 15, 2013 at 5:31 p.m.
Last Modified: Friday, March 15, 2013 at 5:31 p.m.

Alabama 58, Tennessee 48

Facts

Saturday's games

-Florida vs. Alabama, 1 p.m., ABC, 103.7 FM, AM-850/900

-Vanderbilt vs. Mississippi, 3:30 p.m., ABC

What it means: If this was an elimination game for the NCAA Tournament, Tennessee might have kissed its hopes goodbye with an offensive performance that was reminiscent of its December struggles. Alabama keeps its hopes alive for a berth and will play No. 1 seed Florida on Saturday at 1 p.m. in the semifinals. Former UF assistant Anthony Grant is 0-5 vs. Billy Donovan. In what was the most intense and physical game of the tournament so far, Alabama maintained a lead throughout the second half and made enough free throws at the end to win comfortably.

Player of the game: He didn't put up outrageous stats, but in a defensive game, Alabama center Nick Jacobs was a huge factor. He scored six points but also grabbed 11 rebounds and had three blocks including a big one late.

Inside the box score: Jordan McRae was a big reason why the Volunteers have been playing well in the second half of the season. But the 6-foot-5 junior had a bad day Friday. He made only 3 of 13 shots and committed four turnovers.




Vanderbilt 64, Kentucky 48

What it means: A bad loss like this could knock the Wildcats out of the NCAA Tournament at 20-11. Vanderbilt pulls to .500 with the win at 16-16 and will play in the semifinals Saturday. In a rematch of last year's SEC Tournament Championship game, the Commodores continued their torrid shooting to build a 21-point halftime lead before the Big Blue rally started. But Kentucky could never get any closer than 11 points after an Archie Goodwin dunk that fired up the crowd of predominantly Kentucky fans.

Player of the game: There wasn't one. Vandy had several heroes and nobody had big numbers. So let's give it to a Commodore defense that limited Kentucky to 48 points and 35 percent shooting.

Inside the box score: Vanderbilt came into the game ranked last in the conference in free-throw shooting but made 10 of 11. Kentucky not only struggled from the field but missed half of its 16 free-throw attempts.

Mississippi 64, Missouri 62

What it means: Ole Miss advanced to the semifinal against Vanderbilt and may have secured an NCAA bid in the process. The Rebels trailed by 14 in the second half but rallied to win the game with the aid of a botched inbounds play by Missouri's Laurence Bowers. Missouri's seeding was hurt by the loss but not too badly.

Player of the game: Derrick Millinghaus came off the bench to score 11 points in the last six minutes of the game including the game-winner on a floater in the lane with a little more than a second to play.

Inside the box score: Ole Miss won despite getting killed on the offensive boards. Missouri had 16 offensive rebounds in the game but couldn't convert enough of them.

Southeastern Conference

At Bridgestone Arena

Nashville, Tenn.

First Round

Wednesday's results

Mississippi State 70, South Carolina 59

Texas A&M 71, Auburn 62

Second Round

Thursday's results

LSU 68, Georgia 63

Tennessee 69, Mississippi State 53

Vanderbilt 75, Arkansas 72

Missouri 62, Texas A&M 50

Quarterfinals

Friday's results

Florida 80, LSU 58

Alabama 58, Tennessee 48

Vanderbilt 64, Kentucky 48

Mississippi 64, Missouri 62

Semifinals

Saturday's games

Florida vs. Alabama, 1 p.m.

Vanderbilt vs. Mississippi, 3:30 p.m.

Championship

Sunday's game

Semifinal winners, 1 p.m.

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