COLUMBIA, Mo. (AP) — Kevin Puryear scored 17 points, including 13 in the second half, and Missouri beat Northern Illinois 78-71 Friday night, the Huskies’ first loss of the season.
Puryear led a balanced scoring effort. Terrence Phillips had 13 points to go with six assists, Jakeenan Gant had 11 points and six rebounds, and Namon Wright added 10 points and five rebounds.READ MORE: Miss And Mrs. America Nation Pageant Highlights Diverse Cultures; CBS 2's Suzanne Le Mignot Honored As Multicultural Woman of the Year
After shooting 1 for 3 in the first half, Puryear found a rhythm, shooting 5 for 7 in the second. He has reached double-digit scoring in six of his seven collegiate games.
NIU guard Marshawn Wilson led all scorers with 24 points, making all 10 of his free-throw attempts. Center Marin Maric finished with 14 points and a team-best seven rebounds.
After a quiet start, Travon Baker and Aaric Armstead combined for 16 points in the second half. Baker finished with 11 points and four rebounds, while Armstead had 10 points to go with five rebounds.READ MORE: Chicago Attorney Cannon Lambert Sr. Sworn In As New President Of Cook County Bar Association
Missouri (4-3) took a one-point lead into halftime after opening on a 12-0 run. NIU (7-1) missed its first 10 shots before Maric made a layup five minutes into the first half.
NIU fought back, taking advantage of 11 first-half turnovers by Missouri. The Huskies scored 16 points off turnovers and 19 second-chance points.
Phillips hit a jumper from the elbow, beginning a 15-7 run that lasted 3:02. The Tigers shot 6 for 9 during that stretch, capped by a 3-pointer from Cullen VanLeer, his only points.
Post play proved crucial for Missouri, which outscored NIU 32-24 in the paint and enjoyed a 38-34 rebounding advantage. Missouri center Ryan Rosburg had four points and seven rebounds, and Gant scored nine of his 11 points in the second half. Russell Woods added nine points and four rebounds in 15 minutes, tying his career highs.MORE NEWS: Illinois Creates New Commission To Fight Backlog Of Unprocessed DNA Evidence
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