MO State HS Sports

Georgia Edges Men’s Basketball

Aidan Shaw

COLUMBIA, Mo. – The Missouri men’s basketball dropped its opening Southeastern Conference play match to the visiting Georgia on Saturday, 75-68. The loss moves the Tigers to 8-6 (0-1 SEC) on the season, as the Bulldogs improve to 11-3 (1-0 SEC) with its ninth-straight win.

Sean East II led the Tigers with 18 points and eight assists in the game, as well as chipping in six rebounds and a pair of steals. East II’s 18-point performance gives him 1,000 career points in collegiate basketball.

Junior Tamar Bates scored in double figures for the fourth-straight game with 15 points. Sophomore Aidan Shaw added a career-best 14 points to go with six boards, while Noah Carter added 13 points and three assists.

Assisted by a pair of early Carter triples and East II buckets, the Tigers and Bulldogs would stay close to open the game before Georgia used a lengthy run to pull in front by double digits. A 16-0 spurt where the Tigers missed 11-straight field goals allowed the visitors to turn a 19-18 edge into a 35-18 lead.

The Tigers would remain competitive, using six points in just over a minute from Bates to pull within 10 with 3:30 left in the opening stanza. An emphatic Shaw block would energize the crowd and continue the momentum swing toward Missouri, helping piece together a 12-0 run for the home squad. Overall, the Tigers used a 17-2 run to pull within a pair at the break, 40-38.

Coming out of the half, Georgia would maintain the distance in the first five minutes, stifling Mizzou’s attempts to retake the lead. Aided by their ability to draw fouls, UGA would hold three separate five-point leads before Shaw would again ignite the home fans with a slam to pull within two at the 13-minute mark. East II’s layup with 11 to go in the frame would give MU the 57-56 advantage, its first lead since the opening two minutes of the game.

The Bulldogs, however, would eventually retake the lead, using a 9-0 run to turn a 65-63 deficit into a 72-65 lead with just 71 seconds remaining.

Georgia’s early hot-shooting allowed the visitors to make 48.0 percent of its field goals despite the Tigers holding them to 36.0 percent in the second frame. The Bulldogs were also able to take advantage of the charity stripe, outscoring Mizzou, 15-6, from the line. The Tigers, meanwhile, made 44.4 percent of its shots.

The Tigers hit the road for their next match, heading to Rupp Arena to take on SEC-foe Kentucky on Tuesday, Jan. 9. The matchup against the nationally-ranked Wildcats will tip off at 6 p.m. and will be on ESPN.

This article is provided by University of Missouri Athletics