Wednesday February 21st, 2024 2:13PM

Tolu Smith leads Mississippi State over Georgia 75-62

By The Associated Press

STARKVILLE, Miss. (AP) — Tolu Smith scored 19 points and grabbed 12 rebounds and Mississippi State cruised to a 75-62 victory over Georgia on Wednesday night.

Josh Hubbard added 14 points for Mississippi State (15-8, 4-6 SEC). Shakeel Moore chipped in with 11 points and KeShawn Murphy had 10. Cameron Matthews scored nine points to go with 11 rebounds, four assists and four blocks. Hubbard, Moore and Murphy combined for seven of Mississippi State's nine 3-pointers.

Georgia trailed since the opening minutes and by eight points at halftime, but RJ Melendez's 3-pointer cut the deficit to 66-60 with 2:54 to play. Smith converted a three-point play and added a dunk to help Mississippi State pull away.

Noah Thomasson scored 20 points for Georgia (14-9, 4-6), which has lost four straight and six of its last eight games. Blue Cain added 10 points.

A 3-pointer by Moore and a dunk by Smith gave Mississippi State its largest lead of the second half, 56-43, with 9:29 to play. Georgia answered with a 10-0 surge to pull to 56-53 with 6:21 to play but didn't get closer.

Moore and Smith combined for 14 points and Hubbard added 11 as Mississippi State built a 36-28 lead at the break. Thomasson scored all 12 of his first-half points from behind the arc for Georgia.

Each team has road games on Saturday. Georgia faces Arkansas while Mississippi State plays at Missouri.

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