MU tops Colorado to move to 14-0 at Mizzou Arena
Sunday, February 6, 2011
COLUMBIA, Mo. (AP) — A lineup shuffle might have done the trick for No. 14 Missouri. Either that, or just being home again.
Kim English busted a scoring slump with 21 points in a rare reserve role and the Tigers rattled Colorado into a season-worst 23 turnovers in an 89-73 victory Saturday night.
“It’s kind of easy to have energy at home,” said English, who came off the bench for only the second time this season. “You know one big play will get the crowd involved.”
Marcus Denmon added 17 points and Ricardo Ratliffe had 14 points and nine rebounds for Missouri (18-5, 4-4 Big 12), which is 0-4 on the road in conference play but has dominated at home. The Tigers are 14-0 at Mizzou Arena and have led by at least 15 points in the second half of the last nine games.
“I think we came out with more energy,” Denmon said. “Everyone was moving around, flying on the defensive end.”
Playing out of town remains a puzzle for the Tigers, who visit second-ranked Kansas on Monday night.
“Unfortunately,” English said. “We can do it, we just have to do it consistently.”
Alec Burks had 21 points for Colorado (15-9, 4-5), which has lost five of six but had been coming off a 26-point victory Tuesday over Iowa State. Burks had a career-best 36 points in the Buffaloes’ 13-point victory over then-No. 9 Missouri on Jan. 8 in Boulder, Colo.
“I would say that they were more aggressive,” Colorado coach Tad Boyle said. “They sped us up more and playing on the road instead of at home sometimes makes a big difference when you get in this kind of game.”
Buffaloes point guard Nate Tomlinson played only 3 minutes after spraining an ankle and was scoreless.
“I felt like a lot of things didn’t go our way,” said guard Cory Higgins, who had 14 points. “Turnovers and taking care of the ball were the main things and it’s always defense.”
In addition to English, Anderson shook things up after consecutive Big 12 road losses, starting brothers Phil and Matt Pressey for the first time. Laurence Bowers also returned after six games and had six points and three rebounds while battling foul trouble.
Phil Pressey had 13 points, five steals and three assists, but Matt Pressey had only three points in 22 minutes.
“Sometimes you do the same things, you get the same results, and you’ve got to figure out something,” Anderson said. “So we just needed a little jolt. Those guys are still the starters in my mind.”
Bowers said he’s still shaking off the effects of a mild concussion after getting elbowed in the face at Texas.
“Sometimes you just have to play through stuff,” Bowers said. “My mom didn’t want me to play, but this is my family and they needed me.”
English was 6-for-10 shooting overall with two 3-pointers, shaking off a string of unproductive outings. Missouri’s top scorer from last year with a 14-point average was 1-for-8 with four points at Oklahoma State and entered the game shooting 29 percent in conference play.
English prepared for the bench role by working out harder during pre-game drills.
“I just go really hard in warmups like I’m starting and then my time off the bench is like my sub,” English said. “It’s my little thing from freshman year. It’s not about starting, it’s about finishing and minutes and the quality of your play.”
Colorado had only 10 turnovers in the first Missouri matchup, but had 15 by halftime and topped the previous high of 20 in a victory at Kansas State last month. Missouri forced only 11 turnovers at Oklahoma State.
Marcus Relaphorde added 13 points and 12 rebounds for Colorado, which has lost 31 of its last 32 on the road to ranked opponents. The Buffaloes twice shaved a 22-point deficit to 10 in the second half before fading.
English and Michael Dixon had six points each in an 18-4 run that gave Missouri a commanding 44-27 lead with 1:37 to go in the first half. Fans rose to their feet after Phil Pressey made a diving steal and fed to a wide-open Dixon at the basket to end the run, although Dixon disappointed a bit with a layup instead of a dunk.
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