Mark Smith had 22 points and seven rebounds and Missouri extended its winning streak to six games with a 75-61 nonconference triumph over visiting Morehead State on Saturday afternoon.
Jordan Geist supplied 20 points and five rebounds for Missouri (9-3). Kevin Puryear added 12 points and a team-high eight rebounds.
A.J. Hicks led Morehead State (4-9) with 18 points, three rebounds and four assists. Jordan Walker tossed in 12 points while Lamontray Harris recorded a double-double with 10 points and 10 rebounds.
The Tigers shot 43.1 percent from the field while the Eagles shot 40 percent after a slow start. Morehead State had just seven assists on 20 made field goals.
Missouri raced to a 45-22 lead in the opening half. Smith scored 16 points as the Tigers shot 45 percent from the field and made seven 3-pointers, including four from Smith.
The Eagles were limited to 27 percent shooting and missed all nine of their 3-point tries. They also committed nine turnovers, leading to 10 Missouri points.
Smith scored eight points in the first 2 1/2 minutes on a pair of 3-pointers and a layup. Xavier Pinson gave Missouri its first double-digit advantage at 13-2 with a three-point play.
Torrance Watson’s 3-pointer with 10:26 remaining in the half pushed the lead past 20 at 26-5. Smith then drained two more 3-pointers to nudge the lead to 27.
Walker’s 3-pointer early in the second half cut Missouri’s lead to 20 at 50-30. Harris made a pair of layups during an 10-0 Eagles’ run that pulled them within 10 at 56-46.
Geist ended Missouri’s scoring drought with a 3-pointer. Morehead State got within eight at 59-51 on a Hicks 3-pointer.
Missouri then gradually pulled away once again.
The only previous meeting between the programs came on Dec. 3, 1984, when the Tigers prevailed 75-60.
Missouri finished the month of December undefeated for the first time since the 2011-12 season. The Tigers’ six-game streak is their longest since 2013-14, when they started the season 10-0.
—Field Level Media