Logan Ball, 23 Sports

Wednesday, December 21 –

Sophomore Kevin Puryear led the Tigers (5-6) valiantly, but Mizzou still lost in the 36th annual Braggin’ Rights rivalry game against the heavily favored Illinois Fighting Illini (10-3).

While they did keep it close, Missouri continued to shoot poorly with a field goal percentage of 36.1 percent.

No Tiger encompassed that statistic more than freshman Frankie Hughes. Hughes, who has shot an average of 32.3 percent before tonight, shot an abysmal 9.1 percent, making just one of his 11 shots in 21 minutes.

As for Illinois, senior Malcolm Hill came back right where he left off in last year’s Braggin’ Rights game, scoring 21 points for the second straight year and adding five rebounds and two assists to post a well-rounded statline.

Big man Maverick Morgan provided a much-needed spark off of the bench, as he has done for most of the season.

The sophomore from Springboro, Ohio, put up 19 points and 11 rebounds for his first career double-double in just 24 minutes.

Terrance Phillips played a not-so-Philips-like game, putting up 14 points but not a single assist. Known as the “Floor General” in Columbia, his lack of assists affected the team, as Mizzou only had nine assists.

The team has averaged 14 assists per game this season and unsatisfactory ball distribution led to a low scoring night.

Missouri has one last non-conference game on the schedule, as the Lipscomb Bison (6-9) come to town from Nashville, Tennessee.

Lipscomb has beaten Austin Peay, a NCAA tournament team last year, and Mizzou should not take them lightly as SEC games start with the new year.