Posted: Feb 10, 2013 4:07 PM
COLUMBIA - Sharpshooter Morgan Eye drained two shots from deep to set a school record for threes in a season in a 61-56 loss to Mississippi State (11-12) Sunday afternoon at Mizzou Arena. Eye's tally for the year is now up to 92, breaking the previously-held record of 90 that was set by Alyssa Hollins in the 2007-08 season. Liene Priede had a standout performance for Mizzou in today's game (15-9, 4-6), racking up 14 points and going 6-for-7 from the field.
The game was a close defensive battle, with Mizzou and Mississippi State shooting 38.6 and 33.3 percent from the field, respectively. Missouri was just 3-for-20 from distance in the contest, while the visiting team hit six of 11 treys. Missouri won the rebounding battle 38-to-33 and outscored the Bulldog bench 23-4.
The Bulldogs claimed an early lead with a corner three on their first possession, but a 6-0 run from Bri Kulas and Kyley Simmons put the Tigers ahead. Eight straight points for Mississippi State gave the Bulldogs a five point lead until Priede nailed a jumper from the elbow to make it 11-8. After a Bulldog bucket, the Tigers went on a 5-0 run to tie with an Eye three and a Priede score, knotting the game at 13. Sydney Crafton's first points of the game broke the tie, an "and-one" layup to give Mizzou a 16-13 advantage.
MSU came right back with a layup of their own to cut the lead to one, and a corner trey put the visitors on top 18-16. Priede's pull-up jumper tied the game at 18, but MSU answered quickly to match Priede's score. With the Bulldogs up by three, it was Priede again who answered with a jumper, but MSU matched the score on its next possession to hold a 24-21 lead. After a Bulldog free throw, the Tigers scored four straight points from Liz Smith and Sydney Crafton to tie the game at 25 heading into the locker room for halftime.
The Bulldogs opened the scoring in the second half, notching the first three points. A 12-3 run followed for the Tigers, powered by Crafton, Kulas, Smith, and Priede, to put the Tigers ahead 37-31. Mississippi State answered with two threes sandwiched around a Simmons layup, reducing the Mizzou lead to one possession.
Trailing 40-39, MSU went on a 7-2 run for a four-point edge, but Priede ended the run with a fall-away jumper to bring the Tigers back to within two with just over five minutes remaining. Three Mississippi State free throws pushed the guests to a five-point lead until Eye made three of four shots from the charity stripe to bring the Tigers back to within 49-47. The two teams traded free throws over the next two possessions for each, with Mississippi State emerging from the exchange with a 53-51 lead with 1:21 remaining.
A layup for the Bulldogs made the score 55-51, but Kulas made two clutch free throws to keep it a two-point game. Mississippi State nailed their free throws down the stretch, and held on to win by a 61-56 final.
The Tigers next take on Vanderbilt on the road on Thursday and will stay out of town for a contest with Arkansas on the 17th. The Tigers return home a week later to play LSU on Feb. 21.