Freshman Provides Spark Off the Bench for Tigers
COLUMBIA -- The Missouri Tigers beat Tennessee State 68-38 on Saturday, but it took awhile for the Tigers to get started. For this game, Mizzou needed a boost from its bench.
It was another slow start for the Tigers as they scored just 23 points in the first half.
"I thought offensively we weren't as fluid and a lot of it had to do with I thought our focus wasn't good in terms of catching the ball. Just simple as that. In the second half we were better offensively and largely big part because we had some guys come in and make plays," head coach Frank Haith said.
One of those guys was a player who didn't even see the court in the first half, freshman Stefan Jankovic.
"Coach always tells me be ready so it's not really a big thing I'm just on the bench whether it's last game chairing or this game coming in and providing a spark so I mean I'm always ready," Jankovic said.
Jankovic's spark provided 14 points and 5 rebounds all in just 16 minutes of action.
"When he came into the game I said we need your energy and that's exactly what he gave us you know from the tip-dunk, to playing defense, to contesting shots, to you know hitting shots," senior Alex Oriakhi said.
"It's just always being ready so you know I wanna mash the shots up and what-not so when the gametime comes like this I'm ready to come in and knock shots," Jankovic said.
"Having the right attitude obviously disappointed you know everybody wants to play but Stef kept the a great attitude and that gives yourself a chance when you have opportunity," Haith added.
A great attitude met a great opportunity and helped the Tigers to a 30-point win.
The Tigers are in action again a week from Monday, on December 17 against South Carolina State.