November 22, 2012

Tigers win in round one

PARADISE ISLAND, BAHAMAS--No one will mistake Missouri's 78-70 win over Stanford in the opening game of the Battle 4 Atlantis tournament for a shooting exhibition. The teams combined to go 47-for-127 from the floor, a combined 37% clip.

"When the shots don't fall, that don't mean you can't win," Frank Haith said. "You've got to find a way."

Find a way the Tigers did. Mizzou never led by double digits after a 12-0 Cardinal run erased a 28-16 lead midway through the first half. But the Tigers also never trailed in the final 18:43, after a Laurence Bowers three put them up 40-38. In fact, virtually every time Missouri had to have a shot, it was the senior forward who came through.

"We knew Stanford wasn't going to go away without a fight," Bowers said. "The second half is when you put the team away. Obviously as an individual, I would love to play better in the first half, but whenever I get an opportunity to step up for my team, that's what I'm going to do."

"He's a senior," Phil Pressey said of Bowers. "He's been here before, he knows what it takes down the stretch. And he works on those shots every day. I'm not surprised. The coaching staff, none of the team is surprised. We're used to him making that."

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