With suffocating defense, the Missouri Tigers forced Illinois into 17 turnovers and just 36% shooting holding on to Braggin Rights in St. Louis for the second year in a row following their 63-56 win over the Illini in St. Louis.
Dru Smith led the Tigers with 19 points. Javon Pickett and Xavier Pinson came off the bench to add 17 and 14 respectively.
The Tigers led 26-23 at the break and opened the second half on a 12-5 run to open up a ten point lead. Dru led the charge out of the half with a basket and finished it with a pass to Pinson for a 3-pointer from the corner to extend Missouri’s lead to 35-26. Mizzou never allowed Illinois to get closer than six and had the lead up to 14 on three different occasions.
Jeremiah Tilmon played just seven minutes in the first half and was limited with an ankle and wrist issue, but Reed Nikko stepped up and held Kofi Cockburn, the leading Big Ten Freshman of the Year candidate, to 13 points while Mizzou out-rebounded one of the top teams in the country, 36-32.
Mizzou improves to 7-4
Trophy presentation https://t.co/7gJrUljUMl
— Bill Pollock (@missourisports) December 21, 2019