November 30, 2006

Tigers shut down the Razorbacks

Consider the first test passed. Mike Anderson was off to the best start for a coach in Missouri basketball history, but not a person had blinked an eye. After all, the Tigers had hardly beaten a who's who of college hoops on their way to 7-and-0. But on Saturday night, Missouri turned 18 first-half turnovers into an easy 86-64 romp over Arkansas.

"No one knows about our basketball team," Anderson said. "I guess the nation got a chance to see that we have something."

The Tigers did it with a defense that was simply dominating at times. The Razorbacks turned the ball over 24 times, including 17 Tiger steals.

"I think the beginning when we came out we wanted to kind of give them a gut check, kind of punch them. Not literally, but kind of give them a punch, knock them back a little bit," said Matt Lawrence. "After that, I think we were in their heads."

While the showing might have surprised the Razorbacks and the 5,500 Missouri fans that braved the element to watch it (including the one that called Anderson "Godsend" as he walked off the court), the Tigers say they weren't a bit surprised.

"No," Stefhon Hannah said simply. "The way we work, I feel like we can beat anybody in the country."

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