The Southeast Missouri State Redhawks opened their 2012-2013 season by travelling to Lawrence, Kansas. There the Jayhawks stepped on them early and wound up with a 19 point win but anyone who watched the second half of that game could see that the Redhawks were a plucky team more than capable of putting up a fight against upper echelon competition.
Missouri found that out first hand this evening as they once again failed to put two halves of quality basketball together in a single game. As has been the case more often than not, it was the first half that saw the Tigers stumble.
One minute into the game Mizzou had a 4-0 lead but it quickly vanished. While they pulled even on a number of occasions over the next eleven minutes, they went into the half down by ten and wouldn’t hold the lead again until 10:57 was left in the game. After a Laurence Bowers basket put them back on top, Missouri outscored the Redhawks 24-9 the rest of the way. It’s not exactly how you draw it up in practice but the Tigers improved to 7-1 with their 81-65, 16-point win over Southeast Missouri.
Bowers once again led Mizzou. He scored a career high 26 points and fell just short of a double-double with nine rebounds. Phil Pressey‘s shooting struggles continued as he was just 4-18 from the floor and 1-7 from three, but he continued to contribute across the board with six rebounds, five assists and three steals. He also got to the line a dozen lines which helped him score a solid 17 in the game. With twelve points and eleven rebounds, Keion Bell came off the bench to notch his first double-double of the season. Tony Criswell scored 13, on 6-8 shooting, in just 21 minutes of play.
Southeast Missouri’s starting five accounted for all but six of their 65 points on the night. Senior guard Corey Wilford matched his season average with 14 to lead the Redhawks. Forwards Tyler Stone and Nino Johnson each had 13 point, seven rebound games while Marland Smith and Lucas Nutt scored 10 and 9 respectively. As a team they made 9-26 three point attempts, eight of which came in their strong first half effort. The ninth and final make came in the opening minute of the second half. As they say, when you live by the three you die by the three. When that well dried up so too did the Redhawks chances of emerging victorious.
For the Tigers the run of home games continues as Tennessee State (4-5) will descend on Columbia this Saturday. TSU is led by a pair of senior forwards who hail from the Chicago area. Robert Covington (16.3 ppg and 7.5 rpg) leads the team in scoring and has racked up 71 points in his last three games. Kellen Thornton (15.0 ppg and 7.8 rpg) is not far behind in the points and holds a slight advantage over Covington in the rebounding department. Junior guard Patrick Miller, also from Chicago, leads the team in assists (6.5) and steals per game (2.8) and is the third member of the team that scores in double figures (11.1 ppg).
The Redhawks will play host to their next two opponents. On December 8th they will tangle with the Central Arkansas Bears (2-3). Then, after an eleven day break, they will face off against the New Orleans Privateers (2-4) for the second time this season. SEMO won their first matchup with New Orleans 83-67 less than a week ago.