J.J. Angelo-23Sports

Wednesday night, the Missouri Tigers lost 78-73 to the Northern Iowa Panthers in their third game of the young season and third straight home game.

Although three Tigers scored in double digits, it was not enough for Mizzou to win the non-conference matchup against the undefeated Panthers of the Missouri Valley Conference.

Northern Iowa guard Karli Rucker, led the upset-minded Panthers with 21 points. Rucker was the difference maker, leading all scorers on both sides while shooting a ridiculous 60 percent (6/10) from beyond the three point line.

Despite the loss, Mizzou was far from offensively inept. Amber Smith lead the Tigers in scoring with 19 points, Freshman Hayley Frank scored a career-high 17 points and Jordan Roundtree added 12 points to the effort.

It was Northern Iowa’s press defense which gave Mizzou the most trouble. The Tigers lead 68-67 with just 5:38 remaining in the fourth but a Karli Rucker three-point bomb sparked a Panthers run.

After going on a 6-0 run to capture the lead, a heavy press was applied by the Panthers which made it difficult for the Tigers to inbound and set up their offense. The press defense prevented any late game comeback by the Tigers. Running out of time and offensive fire-power, Mizzou ultimately fell 78-73.

With the loss, the Missouri Tigers fall to 1-2 this season. They travel to Green Bay, Wisconsin, next for their first away game against the Phoenix of UW-Green Bay on November 16th.