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Dominating defense pushes Mississippi State past Missouri

The Bulldogs defeated the Tigers 74-62, and have now won five straight over Missouri.

Posted: Jan. 27, 2018 10:46 PM

STARKVILLE, Miss. (WTVA/MSU Athletics) - A dominating start to the second half lifted Mississippi State to a 74-62 win against Missouri Saturday night at Humphrey Coliseum.

The teams were tied at 31 at halftime before the Bulldogs surged ahead for good in the opening minutes of the second frame.

Quinndary Weatherspoon led the Bulldogs with 20 points. Abdul Ado and Nick Weatherspoon each added 12 points, while Tyson Carter had 10 points. Ado had a team-high seven rebounds, while Lamar Peters had a career-high nine assists.

MSU improved to 15-6 overall and 3-5 in conference play, while Missouri fell to 13-8 and 3-5. The Bulldogs have won five straight in the series. Overall, MSU is 14-1 at home on the year.

"I'm really pleased with our effort," MSU coach Ben Howland said. "We played hard. In the first half, our bigs did a great job of scoring. In the second half, it was our perimeter players. We had 17 assists on 29 made baskets with only 16 3-point shot attempts.

"Lamar Peters did a great job of leading our team. Nick gave us a huge lift on the offensive end in the second half. This may have been Q's most efficient game this season. Missouri is a high-RPI team, so this is a great win."

A 3-pointer by Aric Holman gave the Bulldogs an early 6-4 lead. The Tigers followed with a 9-2 run for a 13-8 lead. The Bulldogs continued to trail, falling down by seven twice before coming alive late in the first half.

A 3-point play by Tyson Carter capped a 7-0 run and gave the Bulldogs a 24-21 advantage with 5:06 left in the half. MSU would again fall down five before a tip-in by Holman capped a 5-0 run to end the half, tying the game at 31.

Steals by Peters and Quinndary Weatherspoon capped a 9-2 run to start the second half, pushing the Bulldogs to a 40-33 lead with 16:02 left in the contest.

The lead would later grow to nine at 47-38 on a layup by Eli Wright. The teams would trade baskets for a stretch, but the Maroon and White still held a comfortable lead.

A layup by Nick Weatherspoon capped a 6-0 run for a 62-50 lead with 3:55 remaining.

For the contest, MSU hit 29 of 53 shots from the field (54.7 percent), 6 of 16 shots from 3-point range (37.5 percent) and 10 of 14 shots from the foul line (71.4 percent). Missouri hit 26 of 57 shots from the field (45.6 percent), 6 of 22 shots from 3-point range (27.3 percent) and 4 of 8 shots from the foul line (50.0 percent).

Missouri held a 34-27 rebounding advantage. The Bulldogs had 17 assists and 15 turnovers, while the Tigers had 11 assists and 19 turnovers.

Missouri (13-8, 3-5) received 20 points from Kassius Robertson and 10 points from Cullen Vanleer. Jordan Geist had a team-high seven rebounds.

MSU returns to the road for a Wednesday night contest at South Carolina. The Bulldogs and Gamecocks play at 7:30 p.m. CT on the SEC Network in Columbia.

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