Missouri’s season finally came to a close Wednesday night, as the team fell to the South Carolina Gamecocks 63-54 in the first round of the Southeastern Conference Tournament. Despite being in the thick of things for much of the game, an untimely scoreless run at the end proved costly for the Tigers, and they will now have a long spring and summer to prepare for next season.
A 7-0 run at the end of the first half helped the Tigers erase a Gamecock lead that, at a time, reached 13 points. However, two four-plus minute scoreless droughts in the second half ultimately spelled Missouri’s doom.
Freshman guard Montaque Gill-Caesar led the Tigers with 10 points, while sophomore forward Johnathan Williams III posted nine points and 11 rebounds. Seniors Keanau Post and Keith Shamburger (coming off the bench) scored four and six points, respectively, in what was the final game they will both play for the Tigers.
Shamburger was removed from the starting lineup as a disciplinary measure for what Missouri coach Kim Anderson called “a minor violation of team rules.”
For Shamburger and Post, the road is over. But for the rest of the the Tigers, sights are now set on making sure that the 2015-2016 campaign is not the second consecutive one on the wrong side of the record books.
“I feel like the freshmen and sophomores, we can go nowhere but up,” freshman guard Tramaine Isabell said. “I feel like we’ve got a good future ahead of us.”