The Tigers open conference play at Ole Miss Jan. 2.
Dec. 31, 2013
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MU Head Coach: Robin Pingeton
(St. Ambrose `90) 54-53 at MU (4th season)
UM Head Coach: Matt Insell
(Middle Tenn. State , `07) 9-5 at UM (1st season)
MIZZOU OPENS SEC PLAY AT OLE MISS
Mizzou Women's Basketball returns to action on Jan. 2 in Oxford, Miss. against the Ole Miss Rebels. The Tigers are 1-1 against Ole Miss in school history, with the last meeting coming last season in Oxford as well. The Tigers topped the Rebels 73-72 in overtime thanks to a last second free throw from Sydney Crafton.
The Tigers open up SEC play at home on Sunday, hosting the Arkansas Razorbacks in a 2 p.m. contest. The Mizzou juniors, Bree Fowler and Morgan Eye will sign autographs following the game, and Mizzou will host Family Funday on the main concourse beginning at 1 p.m.
LOOKING AT THE REBELS
The Rebels are 9-5 on the season under first year head coach, Matt Insell. The team will see the Tigers after a 99-69 victory over Austin Peay to close out their non-conference slate. The Rebels are led by junior Tia Faleru, who averages 16.8 points and 10.2 rebounds per game. Valencia McFarland is also averaging just over 16 points per game for Ole Miss. Faleru shared SEC Player of the Week honors with Mizzou senior Bri Kulas earlier this season as she put up her fourth double-double of the season and averaged 18.5 points per game through the previous week.
LAST TIME OUT
The Tigers remain undefeated at home after last Sunday's 75-60 victory over Western Illinois.
Freshman Jordan Frericks notched her fourth double-double matching her career high of 14 points and tallying 12 rebounds.
The Tigers assisted on over half of their field goals in the contest and also spread the scoring around. The game marks the eighth time in 13 games that the Tigers had at least three players score at least 10 points.
Morgan Eye hit six three-pointers to lead the Tigers with 22 points in the game.
With an 11-2 record in non-conference play, the Tigers have gained momentum leading to conference play. Among Tiger victories this season, Mizzou is holding its opponents to just 58.5 points per game with an average scoring margin of +20.1 points. Mizzou averages 5.6 blocks per game in winning contests and also outrebounds opponents by an average of 8.2 rebounds per game.
The Tigers are 2-2 on the road this season, looking to improve to 3-2 on Thursday. Mizzou is very good from the free throw line in unfamiliar territory, shooting 88.2 percent from the charity stripe on the road.
As the team, the Tigers aim for 80-percent free-throw shooting during practices and in games. Mizzou is now shooting 77.2-percent from the line this season, just under its season goal. That mark leads the SEC and checks in at 11th nationally. Six players are shooting 70-percent or better and Mizzou's leader in total free throws - Bri Kulas - is arguably the team's top shooter from the line, checking in at 83.6-percent (51-of-61).
Under fourth-year head coach Robin Pingeton, Mizzou is continuing to play great team basketball. That is evidenced by Mizzou's 17.9 assists per game (fourth in the SEC and 24th nationally) and its 1.1 assist/turnover ratio, which ranks fifth in the SEC and 47th nationally.
This season the Tigers are averaging 5.2 blocks per game, a number that ranks second in the SEC and 25th in the nation. The number is much improved from last season when the Tigers averaged 2.3 blocks per game. Freshman Jordan Frericks is dominating in this category, she leads the team with 28 blocks on the season, good for an average of 2.2 per game (third-best in the SEC).
The Tiger staff is stressing a defensive mindset this season, and Missouri's numbers are showing it. The Tigers are amongst leaders in the SEC (second) in defensive rebounding at 30.8 per game and lead the league in defensive rebounding percentage at 73.5.
Mizzou continues to show quality depth off the bench this season as the team is averaging 27.5 points per game off the pine. Three different players average at least 6.0 points per game off the bench this season, led by 8.3 from sophomore Morgan Stock. Mizzou has a +9.8 average per game off the bench this season. Over one-third of the Tigers' scoring comes from off the bench this season.
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