Roberto Soltero, 23 Sports

The Missouri Tigers Women’s Basketball team had a hard-fought win in their first game of the SEC Tournament on Thursday night against the Ole Miss Rebels. The No. 6 seeded Tigers defeated the No. 14 Rebels 59-50. The Tigers played with much to prove after dropping the regular season finale to Texas A&M by a score of 82-63.

The Tigers led for much of this game but costly turnovers allowed the Rebels to stick around. Missouri had 24 turnovers in the game. It wasn’t the first time that turnovers have been an issue for Mizzou, given that they committed 15 in their loss to Texas A&M. Overall the Tigers led in every other category. A good sign for Missouri is that they shot 28 free throws and knocked down 20 of them. The Rebels only shot 12 free throws. The Tigers grabbed 37 rebounds and played as a team, dishing out 15 assists. Missouri’s defense was amazing throughout the game as well, posting 10 blocked shots and forcing five steals.

Missouri’s leading scorer was Amber Smith. Smith scored 16 points to go along with nine rebounds and five assists. Sophie Cunningham scored 11 points and spent much of the game in foul trouble. The Rebels leading scorer was Madinah Muhammad with 20.

This was Missouri’s first ever win in the SEC tournament. They were 0-5 all time.

The Tigers will now face the No.3 Georgia Bulldogs on Friday night. Missouri lost to the Georgia 62-50 back on Jan. 25. The biggest problem for the Tigers in that game was again the turnovers. The Bulldogs forced 18 of them and were able to take advantage. Georgia is the second best defensive team in the SEC, allowing just 57.2 PPG.

Start time for tomorrow’s game will be 9:30 pm.  The game will be aired on the SEC Network