KANSAS CITY, Mo. – Marshall Henderson shook out of a shooting slump and scored 17 points in the second half, leading 12th-seeded Mississippi past No. 5 Wisconsin 57-46 on Friday, giving the Rebels their first NCAA tournament win since 2002.
For the cold-shooting Badgers (23-12), the upset loss snaps a string of six straight first-game victories. Ole Miss (27-8) trailed 25-22 at halftime in the second-round game and Henderson, who led the Southeastern Conference with 20 points a game, had only two points on one-for-11 shooting.
But the flamboyant and outspoken guard found his touch just in time for Ole Miss. His back-to-back 3-pointers tied it 36-36 and his layup and two free throws in the final minute sealed the win.
Reginald Buckner had nine points and 12 rebounds for the Rebels, who held Wisconsin to miserable 25.4 percent from the field. Sam Dekkar had 14 points for Wisconsin, which was only 15 for 59, including 7 for 30 from beyond the arc.
In the third round of the West Regional on Sunday, the Rebels will play either No. 4 seed Kansas State or No. 13 La Salle.
Henderson's futility reached its zenith with about 12 minutes to go when he fumbled the ball in the Wisconsin back court right into the hands of Dekkar, who raced down the court with Henderson on his shoulder and laid the ball in for a 36-30 Badger lead.
But on Ole Miss' next possession, Henderson finally connected after missing his first six 3-pointers and all but one of his first 13 from the floor.
After Buckner missed two free throws and the Rebels rebounded an errant Wisconsin shot, Henderson hit another 3-pointer before Jared Berggren answered for the Badgers with a 3 of his own.
Murphy Holloway put the Rebels ahead to stay with a tip-in and another bucket. Then, after one of Wisconsin's 11 turnovers, Jarvis Summers connected for Ole Miss.
Henderson, whose 88 percent foul shooting led the SEC, hit two free throws at the 5:13 mark for a 45-41 lead, then the two teams swapped turnovers before Buckner pulled down a defensive rebound and Henderson canned a jumper for a 47-41 lead.
An unsightly first half ended, appropriately, with a Wisconsin turnover and a 25-22 lead for the Badgers.
Wisconsin hit only 4 of its first 17 shots and ended the half 7 for 23 but nevertheless held a 3-point lead because the Rebels were even worse. Ole Miss was only 10 for 32 the first 20 minutes.
Jared Berggren, Wisconsin's career blocks leader, rejected three shots in the first half.