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Archive for Thursday, December 24, 2009

Missouri halts nine-game slide against Illinois

December 24, 2009

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Missouri 81, Illinois 68

Kim English scored 24 points while matching his career best with five three-pointers, and Missouri hounded Illinois into a season-high 22 turnovers in a victory that ended the Tigers’ nine-year losing streak in the Braggin’ Rights game on Wednesday night.

Freshman Michael Dixon had a season-best 16 points and five assists, and J.T. Tiller had 12 points, five assists and five rebounds for the Tigers (8-3), who have won three in a row. Missouri beat Illinois (8-4) in its last chance of the decade in the neutral-site holiday series, winning for the first time since 1999 before a raucous sellout crowd of 20,497 that included recent baseball Hall of Fame inductee Whitey Herzog and Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon.

Mike Tisdale had 14 points and 13 rebounds for Illinois (8-4), which has lost two straight and is 1-4 on the road or at neutral sites. Mike Davis also had a double-double with 11 points and 13 rebounds.

Demitri McCamey scored the first seven points for the Illini, but finished with only 11. Illinois’ previous turnover high was 16 against Boise State.

Missouri was 10 for 25 from three-point range, including English’s 5-for-10 effort and Marcus Denmon’s 2-for-4 in the second half. The Tigers led by 13 points several times in the second half, and Illinois shaved the deficit to six twice before the game got out of hand at the end.

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