After totaling five assists and 17 turnovers eight days earlier in a one-point home win against Texas A, Missouri played more crisp and efficient on offense. A tremendous passing sequence, capping by junior Jabari Brown’s cross-court skip pass to senior Earnest Ross for a three-pointer in the left corner highlighted the difference.
Missouri had a 7-to-6 assist-to-turnover ratio in the first half, a far cry from that 5-to-17 ratio in the previous meeting.Second half/overtime
Freshman Johnathan Williams III rebounded a missed free throw early in the second overtime, missed his initial putback try but stuck with in and eventually scored to boost Missouri’s lead to 82-79. Those were two of his eight offensive boards and 15 total rebounds.
Missouri went 40 of 53 at the free-throw line, which is two shy of the program record for made free throws (vs. UTEP, Dec. 8, 1973) and three shy of the record for attempts (vs. Oklahoma, Feb. 5, 1957).Rector relishes meaningful minutes
It’s been a frustrating season at times for freshman shooting guard Shane Rector, who logged only 90 minutes of court time during the regular season and only 40 minutes during SEC action.
Rector was a DNP-coach’s decision in four of Missouri’s last six games, but he was called on with 4:02 remaining in double overtime Thursday when junior Jordan Clarkson fouled out.
Junior Jabari Brown had already fouled out with 53 seconds left in the first overtime.
“I knew (Clarkson) had four fouls, so I was on the bench just staying ready in case he got the fifth,” Rector said. “I just had to step up.”
And step up, Rector did, popping off the bench for three points — all at the free-throw line — with two rebounds and two steals in four minutes. He also had one turnover, but hustled back force a steal immediately after the miscue.
“Winning always feels good, but when you feel like you’re a part of it — and I felt like that today — you feel better about your contribution rather than just cheering for your team,” Rector said. “I don’t have a problem with that, but to help get some keys stops and steals really felt great.”Tigers unfazed by turnovers
How’s this for an unusual stat? After committing 18 turnovers in a double-overtime win against Texas A, Missouri is 5-0 this season when committing at least 17 turnovers.
The Tigers beat Gardner-Webb on Nov. 23 despite 21 turnovers, toppled UCLA on Dec. 17 amidst 18 turnovers, survived Jan. 28 at Arkansas in spite of 19 turnovers and edged the Aggies last week while committing 17 turnovers.
Perhaps Missouri needs to consider committing more than the 12 turnovers it had Feb. 4 in a 68-58 loss at Florida during Friday’s quarterfinal.Post gets starting nod
For the first time all season, Missouri switched up its starting lineup.
Coach Frank Haith opted to trot out junior Keanau Post instead of sophomore Ryan Rosburg for the opening tipoff.
Post only played 6 minutes, logging a rebound, a foul, a turnover and his first career steal.
Rosburg wound up playing 37 minutes. He finished with six points, two steals, two turnovers and a rebound.Facing No. 1
Missouri faces the No. 1 team in the nation, Florida, in the SEC quarterfinals at noon Friday. Since 1951-52, the Tigers are 4-14 against the top-ranked team in The Associated Press poll.
|Jan. 12, 1952||vs. Kansas||L, 60-59|
|Feb. 22, 1958||vs. Kansas State||L, 82-61|
|March 1, 1958||at Kansas State||L, 86-75|
|Dec. 7, 1964||at Michigan||L, 91-61|
|Dec. 22, 1971||at UCLA||L, 94-75|
|Nov. 26, 1983||at North Carolina||L, 64-57|
|Nov. 29, 1985||vs. North Carolina (Anchorage, Alaska)||L, 84-63|
|Feb. 25, 1989||vs. Oklahoma||W, 97-84|
|Jan. 20, 1990||vs. Kansas||W, 95-87|
|Feb. 13, 1990||at Kansas||W, 77-71|
|Feb. 25, 1995||at Kansas||L, 88-69|
|March 19, 1995||vs. UCLA (Boise, Idaho)||L, 75-74|
|Feb. 4, 1997||vs. Kansas||W, 96-94 (2OT)|
|Feb. 17, 1997||at Kansas||L, 79-67|
|March 9, 1997||vs. Kansas (at Kemper Arena)||L, 87-60|
|March 17, 2001||vs. Duke (Greensboro, N.C.)||L, 94-81|
|March 3, 2002||vs. Kansas||L, 95-92|
|Dec. 22, 2004||vs. Illinois (St. Louis)||L, 70-64|