EditorsNote: Minor edits to correct time of plays, shooting percentage for Missouri; other minor edits
Jeremiah Tilmon had 16 points, seven rebounds and five blocks, and Xavier Pinson scored 15 points to help host Missouri roll past Incarnate Word 82-42 in its season opener on Wednesday night in Columbia, Mo.
Javon Pickett added 10 points and a team-high eight rebounds for the Tigers, who never trailed.
Drew Lutz led Incarnate Word with 16 points. The Cardinals had just seven assists on 15 made baskets while shooting 26.8 percent from the field. Marcus Larsson, a 6-foot-10 forward from Norway, was their next-highest scorer with five points. Vincent Miszkiewicz snagged a game-high 10 rebounds.
The Tigers established dominance in the post early. Pinson recorded assists on three consecutive possessions during one stretch midway through the first half, beginning by feeding Tilmon down low, then finding Tilmon a second time, and then connecting with Tray Jackson on a no-look pass for an alley-oop.
Missouri led by as many as 46 points, breaking the game open by scoring the first nine points coming out of the break and 14 of the first 16.
The Tigers started the half on a 7-for-14 tear from the field, while the Cardinals opened 2-for-15. Missouri shot 44.4 percent for the game and had 16 assists.
Despite hitting only 3 of 17 3-pointers in the first half, the Tigers raced to a 43-22 advantage at intermission. Missouri shot 17-for-37 (46 percent) in the first 20 minutes compared to 9-for-31 (29 percent) for Incarnate Word.
Missouri closed the half on a 7-0 run, getting four of those points from Pinson.
The teams combined to score just three points during the first 3:52 of the night. Incarnate Word didn’t hit double figures until there was 8:37 remaining until halftime.
Missouri earned its fifth straight win in a season opener and improved to 92-22 in such games overall. The Tigers have won each of their three openers under coach Cuonzo Martin.
—Field Level Media