By Charles Kane (Twitter: @ckane02)
The Tigers won their 15th straight game at home and remained undefeated in defeating No. 5 Florida 63-60 Tuesday night.
Missouri (19-7) ended the game on a 27-11 run. The Tigers never led by more than three points the entire game. Their first lead in the entire series (77 minutes total) did not come until Phil Pressey made a transition basket getting fouled in the process at the 2:51 mark in the second half.
Pressey finished the game with seven points, 10 assists and six boards. He also turned it over half as many times as he did a month ago in the O’Connell Center (10). Laurence Bowers who missed January’s game against the Gators due to an MCL sprain finished with game-highs in both points with 17 and rebounds with 10. He also had the go-ahead, uncontested jumper with 1:15 to play in the second half. Missouri’s Frank Haith is now 30-1 at home.
Besides Florida’s hot stretch of shooting 5-7 (71%) from beyond the arc early in the second half, they shot 5-26 (19%). The Gators also missed their last eight shots of the first half. Closing games has been quite the issue for Florida this season. The Gators are now 0-4 in games decided by 11 points or fewer compared to 21-0 in all other games. When Florida wins they win comfortably but the 3-pointers have not been falling when they have to. Kenny Boynton missed three important 3-pointers in the final three minutes of the ballgame. He finished with 11 points on 4-13 shooting and 2-9 from beyond the arc.
Patric Young scored two points for his second consecutive game shooting 2-7 in both games combined. Young had a stretch of 26 consecutive games of shooting 50% or better from early March 2012 to February 2013. He has shot less than 50% in three of his last four games since.
Florida’s (21-4) next game is Saturday, Feb. 23 at 7:00 p.m. vs. Arkansas.
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