Vanderbilt hands Missouri basketball ninth straight loss, 86-71

Rosburg hands in first career double-double in loss.
Missouri Tiger forward Kevin Puryear attempts to re-set a missed shot during the basketball game against Mississippi State on Jan 30 in Mizzou Arena.

For the ninth consecutive game, the Missouri (8-16, 1-10 SEC) men’s basketball team walked off the court with their heads hung in defeat.

Vanderbilt (14-10, 5-5 SEC) dominated the Tigers on Wednesday night in Nashville, 86-71. Here are three takeaways from the game that extended Missouri’s longest losing streak of the season:

The game was over from the start: Slow starts have plagued Missouri throughout the season. Wednesday night was no different.

The Tigers were cold from the opening tipoff, only scoring two points within the opening seven minutes. In that time, Vanderbilt made the first of its eight three pointers and jumped out to a 15-2 lead.

The start led to a rattled Missouri squad that was unable to stop the Commodores in any facet of the game. At halftime, Vanderbilt’s lead was 19. Missouri attempted to climb back in the second half but still fell short by 15.

Completely outmatched: It is tough for any team to deal with a roster like Vanderbilt’s, which boasts a player like 7-foot-1-inch junior forward Luke Kornet. Combine that with a team like Missouri, whose tallest player stands at 6-foot-10, and you have an obvious mismatch.

Vanderbilt dominated the Tigers on the boards throughout the night, grabbing 46 rebounds.

Missouri’s bigs had moderate success on offense. Senior forward Ryan Rosburg led the way scoring 24 points, his second straight double figure game. Sophomore forward Jakeenan Gant also contributed 16 points in his first game back from a one-game suspension.

A tale of two guard cores: Much of Missouri’s scoring this season has come from its guard play, but not on Wednesday night.

Junior guard Wes Clark was not his usual self, not scoring in a game for the first time in two years. Freshman guard Terrence Phillips only scored four points and the guards combined for a measly 21 points on the night.

Their opposition was a completely different story.

Vanderbilt’s guards shot the lights out of Memorial Gym, combining for 41 points and dishing out 11 of the team’s 16 assists. Sophomore guard Wade Baldwin IV scored a team high 17 points.

Up next: Missouri returns to Columbia for its “Rally for Rhyan” game to face off against Tennessee on Saturday. The game will tip off at 2 p.m. and can be viewed on the SEC Network.

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