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December 22, 2009

Bulldogs trounce Centenary in Jackson

JACKSON, Miss. - Mississippi State (10-2) dominated once again in the state capitol behind Ravern Johnson's 20 points en route to 88-51 victory against the Centenary Gents (4-7) at Mississippi Coliseum.

The win was MSU's seventh-straight this season and its 10th in a row in this venue.

The Bulldogs also got excellent play from its bench, which contributed a season-high 31 points.

Junior Riley Benock led the bench with nine points on 3-of-3 shooting from beyond the arc, while Johnsom matched his season high with 5 three-pointers. Senior Barry Stewart and sophomore Dee Bost accumulated 14 points, 5 assists and 10 points, 6 assists respectively.

No Gent managed double digits, as junior Roman Tubner and sophomore David Perez each registered nine points.

Mississippi State struggled in the game's first five minutes, as the Gents managed to lead 7-6 on a Tubner jumper at the 15:36 mark. A Benock trey sparked the Bulldogs to an 11-2 run midway through the half, and Johnson completed a four-point play to close out a 46-27 MSU advantage entering halftime.

The Bulldogs never looked back and continued to stretch the lead throughout the second frame. Heralded freshman John Riek recorded the first points of his collegiate career on a layup at the 11:09 mark and finished with six points and seven rebounds in just eight minutes.

Mississippi State's streak of seven wins stands as the second-longest in the Southeastern Conference. Leading the conference and ranking 10th nationally in field-goal percentage defense, the Bulldogs held the Gents to just 19-of-59 (32.2 percent) shooting and brought down 30-of-60 shots (50.0 percent) from the field.

"Barry Stewart has been a terrific defender for us for a long time," MSU coach Rick Stansbury said. "He has shut down every guy we have put him on this year."

State also stands second in the league and 14th nationally from behind the arc, and the Bulldogs delivered a 14-of-27 (51.9 percent) effort Tuesday including Johnson's 5-of-8 performance.

Mississippi State returns to Humphrey Coliseum on Monday, Dec. 28, against Mississippi Valley State (0-10). Tip is set for 7 p.m.



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