Shooting once again problematic in Tigers’ latest defeat

Missouri’s starters combined for only 14 points in the road loss to the No. 14 Mountaineers.

Missouri men’s basketball (9-10, 1-5 SEC) knew it would take something big to upset No. 14 West Virginia (16-3, 4-2 Big 12) on the road. But during 40 minutes of action in Morgantown, the Tigers were unable to put together much of anything, losing 74-51 to the Mountaineers.

The loss — part of the Big 12-SEC Challenge series of games — followed a heartbreaking defeat to Texas A&M earlier in the week and is Missouri’s fourth consecutive loss.

As has often been the case this year for the Tigers, the defeat was underlined by inconsistent offense. Missouri turned the ball over more often than it made field goals, shooting 28% from the field as a team in its worst performance of the year.

"We became passive,” coach Cuonzo Martin said in a radio interview after the game. “It's just really about pride. Letting guys just move you and get offensive rebounds, that can't happen. That's just the individual pride.”

West Virginia jumped out to an early lead, leading by as much as 14 in the first half. The Tigers rallied, however, and entered the locker room at halftime down by just a single point.

Not long after the break, the game was out of hand for Missouri. The Mountaineers scored 21 unanswered points early in the second half over a six-minute span, sealing the game well before time expired.

There were few positives for Missouri’s offense, which saw its starters combine for only 14 points and three made field goals. Torrence Watson was one of the few bright spots, putting up 19 points and five 3-pointers, though the bulk of his production came in the late stages of the game when the Mountaineers had eased up.

Missouri hosts Georgia (11-7, 1-4 SEC) and NBA prospect Anthony Edwards at 7:30 p.m. CDT on Tuesday.

Edited by Wilson Moore | wmoore@themaneater.com

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