Mizzou women fall to LSU in conference home opener

Seth Pollock, 23 Sports

For the first time since November 10th, the Missouri women’s basketball team lost a game. The LSU Tigers, bolstered by a 32-10 run that spanned  from midway through the first quarter to near the end of the second, came away from Mizzou arena with a 69-65 win over the Missouri Tigers Thursday night. The loss snapped a 13 game home winning streak for Mizzou, dating back to last season.

Junior Sophie Cunningham, the Tigers leading scorer at 18.2 points a game, didn’t play. Cunningham had previously been listed as day to day after suffering a knee sprain in the Tigers’ 62-56 win at Alabama on New Year’s Eve.

Early on, it looked like her teammates were well on their way to picking up the slack. Three early field goals gave Missouri a 7-0 lead only 127 seconds in. But from then on Mizzou went cold, and the Missouri Tigers held only an 11-7 lead at the end of one.

In the second quarter, LSU got hot. Four three pointers helped their Tigers get out to a 32-21 halftime lead. From 6:46 to 1:31 in the second LSU didn’t miss a shot, hitting eight consecutive field goals. Mizzou hit only two field goals in the entire quarter.

Mizzou began its comeback attempt in the third, getting the LSU lead down to only 48-42 with a 21 point outburst. But the Tigers were unable to get any closer than six all quarter.

In the fourth, Sophomore Amber Smith took over for Missouri. She scored 16 points on six field goals and two free throws to give Mizzou a reasonable shot at the comeback win. But when LSU needed answers at the other end, they got them. Two Chloe Jackson free throws gave LSU a 67-63 lead with ten seconds left. Missouri got two free throws of their own from Amber Smith with seven seconds left and then got a break with two missed foul shots by LSU’s Raigyne Louis. But Nadia Green’s turnover with four seconds left Mizzou with little chance. Chloe Jackson sealed the deal for LSU with two more free throws.

The loss dropped Mizzou to 13-2 overall and 1-1 in SEC play, while LSU improved to 10-3 and 2-0 in conference. Mizzou’s next game is Sunday January 7th against #4 South Carolina at Mizzou Arena.