J.J. Angelo-23Sports

The Missouri Tigers men’s basketball team suffered a fourth straight loss Saturday afternoon, falling big on the road to the Mountaineers of West Virginia 74-51.

To say the past two weeks have been rocky for the Tigers would be an understatement. Since their dominant win against the Florida Gators on January 11th, Mizzou hasn’t won a game, losing their last four by an average of 16.5 points. In that stretch, they’ve shot an average of 31% from the field and 24.5% from three-point range.

The Tiger’s shooting performance in West Virginia was perhaps the worst of any this season which is odd considering they were down a single point at halftime against the number 14 team in the nation. Nonetheless, a 28% field goal percentage will never get the job done.
After starting the game an abysmal 2 for 21 shooting, Mizzou got back on track with a 17-4 run that took them into halftime looking ready for a dogfight.

However, a 21-0 run by the Mountaineers and six-plus Missouri scoring drought in the early second half was an undeniable separating force in this Big 12/SEC challenge game. The Tigers didn’t help themselves out either, turning the ball over a total of 16 times.
Missouri’s Torrence Watson finished as the game’s leading scorer, a majority of his 19 points came with the game far out of reach. The next highest Tiger point total was six, scored by Kobe Brown and Xavier Pinson respectively.

The continued absence of Mizzou’s Jeremiah Tilmon (stress fracture) has been an evident issue. West Virginia exploited Missouri’s lack of size down-low, outrebounding the Tigers 50 to 30.

Inexperience is another problem for this Mizzou squad which features just one senior, Reed Nikko. The hope with a young roster is that tough games, such as this, will build a group of youngsters into a team of battle-tested upperclassmen in the coming years.
With the loss to the Mountaineers, the Tigers drop to 9-10 this year and sit at 1-5 in SEC play. Missouri returns to SEC play Tuesday night in a home matchup with the Georgia Bulldogs.