No. 12 Missouri looks to bounce back against TCU

Coming with a loss at Auburn on Tuesday, Missouri No. 12 will bounce back Saturday against TCU in the Big 12 / SEC Challenge in Columbia, Mo.

Missouri (10-3, 4-3 SEK) lost to Auburn 88-82 despite receiving 21 season-high points from fifth-year senior Dru Smith.

Smith, who moved to Missouri from Evansville after his second season, also scored his 1,000th career point in the game. His performance helped Missouri take the lead after 14 points in the first half, but Auburn eventually withdrew.

The loss hit a winning streak with three games.

Missouri is 4-3 in its last seven games after starting the season with six straight victories.

“One positive is how we were able to respond there at the end of the first half,” Smith said. “It changed the kind of speed. I think we played Tennessee earlier in the season, and we went down early and we couldn’t bounce back. We responded and even got the lead back.”

Missouri Jeremiah Tilmon achieved his fifth double in the last eight games with 21 points, 10 rebounds and a career-high six blocks. Javon Pickett added 13 points from the bench on 6-of-10 shooting from the field.

TCU (9-6, 2-5 Big 12) lost at No. 15 Kansas 59-51 on Thursday, Horned Frogs fourth straight loss and their first game in 16 days after their previous three games were postponed due to COVID-19.

The Horned Frogs, who also welcomed back head coach Jamie Dixon, who tested positive for COVID-19, improved their loss 93-64 against Kansas at home on January 5.

They held the Jayhawks to just 18 points in the first half, the first points by Kansas in half since March 2002.

“Today was definitely a light for us,” said novice Mike Miles. “We felt we could have won that game. Our revenue was too high, but it was definitely one we should have won.”

TCU, which committed 22 turnovers, fell to 0-10 in Lawrence, Kan., But got away with some hope from Miles performance.

He went from going 0 for 8 from the field and being scoreless in the first meeting with Kansas to leading all goal scorers with 18 points (6 of 12 from the field) in Thursday’s rematch.

Postman Kevin Samuel, who had no rebounds in the first meeting, finished with a pile of eight boards.

“It was progress for us, especially in the defensive end and coming back,” Dixon said. “Given that we had an exercise, I thought we were fighting. We competed. I thought we did really good things in terms of execution. We have to finish better on some units, had to make more free throws, but we played hard and we fought.”

Chuck O’Bannon Jr., son and nephew of former UCLA stars Charles and Ed, respectively, is in his first full season with TCU after the transfer from USC.

He scored seven points against Kansas on Thursday after scoring a career-high 18 points in the first meeting with the Jayhawks.

– Field level media

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