Missouri cruises in 78-25 win over Arkansas-Pine Bluff
COLUMBIA, Mo. (AP) Missouri fans witnessed history Tuesday night as the Tigers dismantled Arkansas-Pine Bluff 78-25.
It's the lowest scoring total by a Missouri opponent since the Tigers defeated Iowa State 36-25 on Jan. 3, 1947, and the lowest in the 11-year history of Mizzou Arena.
Kevin Puryear scored 13 points to go with eight rebounds as Missouri snapped its three-game losing streak, which began with an 88-52 loss to then 13th-ranked Arizona.
Wes Clark added 11 points, two rebounds and three assists, shooting 3 of 5 from 3-point range. Clark has made seven 3-pointers in the last two games after making only eight in Missouri's first 10 games.
''Obviously, it's a game we played well in,'' Missouri coach Kim Anderson said. ''I think the way we did it was important because we shared the ball well. We talked going in about how to guard them and we talked a lot about rebounding. I think we followed what we wanted to do.''
Jakeenan Gant had seven points and a career-high 11 rebounds, aiding the Tigers on their way to a 56-30 rebounding margin, their largest of the season.
Gant said rebounding has been a point of emphasis for him in practice.
''Every day (the coaches) are on me about rebounding and just being more active around the rim,'' Gant said. ''Being more active on defense, getting blocks; just doing the little things.''
Russell Woods made his first career start for Missouri (6-6), scoring six points and grabbing 10 rebounds in 15 minutes. His rebound total matches his career high he had in Missouri's 68-63 loss to Illinois last Wednesday.
The Tigers dominated out of the gate, using a 30-7 run that lasted 12:20 to secure a 39-12 halftime lead.
K.J Walton made his second start of the season for Missouri, adding seven points and two rebounds. Walton's first start was in the season-opener against Wofford, when he had six points and two rebounds in an 83-74 victory.
''To win this by such a large margin is great,'' Walton said. ''We needed this. We lost the last few games, so it's a big confidence-builder for us.''
The Golden Lions (2-12) shot 15.4 percent from the field, the lowest percentage by a Missouri opponent since Texas A&M shot 24.1 percent on March 14, 2013, a game the Tigers won 62-50.
Arkansas-Pine Bluff's Thaddeus Handley had a team-high eight points to go with two rebounds and JoVaughn Love had seven points and one rebound. Love entered the game as the Golden Lions' leading scorer, averaging 10.7.
Missouri enjoyed its largest margin of victory since defeating South Carolina State 102-51 on Dec. 17, 2012.
Despite not scoring, Devin Berry led the Golden Lions with a career-high 10 rebounds. Berry was averaging only 1.8 rebounds per game heading into this game.
Arkansas-Pine Bluff: The Golden Lions are in the midst of an 18-game road streak to start their season. ... Jaquan Lynch had his four-game streak of at least one made 3-pointer snapped. ... Arkansas-Pine Bluff is 0-20 against Southeastern Conference opponents.
Missouri: The Tigers have outrebounded five of their last seven opponents, including double-digit margins against Illinois and Arkansas-Pine Bluff. ... Missouri leads the series 5-0. ... Adam Wolf logged a season-high five minutes, finishing with six points, three rebounds and two blocks.
The 23rd-ranked Missouri women's team defeated Charlotte 88-71 at Mizzou Arena prior to the men's game. Jordan Frericks led the Tigers with 16 points and 15 rebounds.
QUOTE OF THE NIGHT
''I've been doing doubleheaders for 12 years,'' Anderson said. ''I walked into the arena tonight and there was such an electricity. I'm like `Man, this place is going already!' I thought that was kind of a neat environment.''
Arkansas-Pine Bluff visits Mississippi Valley State Monday.
Missouri hosts Savannah State Saturday.