COLUMBIA, Mo. — Alex Oriakhi had a career-high 22 points to go with 18 rebounds, three blocks and a central role in a second-half fracas during No. 21 Missouri’s 98-79 victory over Mississippi on Saturday.
Phil Pressey had four assists to break Anthony Peeler’s career school record and had 22 points for Missouri (17-6, 6-4).
Marshall Henderson had 16 points on 4 for 15 shooting for Mississippi (18-5, 7-3), which has lost three of four.
The game got testy with about 7½ minutes to go when Reginald Buckner apparently was tripped by Oriakhi after the Tigers scored to make it 80-58 and came up swinging with a couple of wild punches that missed Laurence Bowers as Oriakhi danced away.
Buckner was ejected, leaving the court with a towel draped over his right shoulder and then tossing the towel into the stands after finishing with nine points and four rebounds. Oriakhi was called for a flagrant foul, plus Missouri’s Jabari Brown, Bowers and Mississippi’s Murphy Holloway were whistled for technicals.
NO. 2 FLORIDA 83, MISSISSIPPI STATE 58
In Gainesville, Fla., Mike Rosario scored 18 points, Erik Murphy added 17 and Florida (19-3, 9-1) thumped short-handed Mississippi State (7-15, 2-8).
Casey Prather, playing in place of injured forward Will Yeguete, chipped in 12 points and five rebounds for the Gators. Yeguete had arthroscopic surgery on Friday to remove loose bodies in his right knee.
Mississippi State played without guard Jalen Steele, who was suspended for violating team rules.
Gavin Ware led the Bulldogs with 16 points.
KENTUCKY 72, AUBURN 62
In Lexington, Ky., Kyle Wiltjer’s 14 points led five Kentucky players in double figures as the Wildcats (17-6, 8-2) beat Auburn (9-14, 3-7) for their fifth consecutive win.
The victory provided Kentucky with its longest winning streak this season and some momentum before Tuesday’s showdown at first-place Florida.
Ryan Harrow and Willie Cauley-Stein each added 12 points, while Julius Mays and Nerlens Noel had 10 apiece.
Chris Denson’s 15 points led Auburn.
VANDERBILT 67, ARKANSAS 49
In Nashville, Tenn., Rod Odom scored 15 points, and Vanderbilt (9-13, 3-7) beat Arkansas (14-9, 5-5) to snap a four-game losing skid and get a bit of payback for one of their ugliest losses this season.
Vanderbilt managed only 11 points by halftime and matched a season-low in points while losing 56-33 to Arkansas on Jan. 12 in Fayetteville.
Mardracus Wade led Arkansas with 13 points.
ALABAMA 60, LOUISIANA STATE 57
In Tuscaloosa, Ala., Nick Jacobs scored 15 points and hit two free throws with 46 seconds left to help Alabama (15-8, 7-3) beat Louisiana State (13-8, 4-6).
Johnny O’Bryant led LSU with 22 points and 11 rebounds.