Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Mizzour Rules Open Road despite Buffs' Mack Tuck

Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Mizzour Rules Open Road despite Buffs' Mack Tuck

Article excerpt

As the promising-but-discombobulated Missouri Tigers have scuffed through their schedule, glaringly absent have been the usual dynamics of Mizzou basketball: a sure-fire, go-to-scorer (or scorers), constant and harsh defense and poised free throw shooting in the perilous late moments.

"Characteristically, we've always shot (free throws) well in the last minutes of the ballgame; hopefully, we will again," MU coach Norm Stewart said. "If you don't, it gets exciting."

On Saturday, at the ever-somber Hearnes Center, the Tigers revived their dormant late-game free throw shooting to douse Colorado 77-66 in the Big Eight Conference opener for both teams.

MU, which entered the game shooting 54 percent (47-87) from the free throw line in the final four minutes, made 13 of 15 (86.6 percent) in that span to seal the victory.

It probably was inevitable.

It was Mizzou's 25th successive victory over Colorado at the Hearnes Center. No current Colorado player even had been born when the Buffs (5-6) last won here on Jan. 15, 1973.

"That's just something," Colorado coach Joe Harrington said, "for you guys to write about."

Well, yeah.

"Most teams don't win in this place, so what's new? It isn't just Colorado," Harrington said, adding, "Typical Colorado-Missouri game, from games I've been a part of here at the Hearnes Center.

"(We) stayed with them most of the game and then weren't able to put them away at the end," he said.

But always-accommodating Colorado had something to do with that. In the first half, for instance, Colorado's Mack Tuck finished a gorgeous layup off a lob to put the Buffs up 29-27.

Tuck, though, then allowed himself to fall prey to another suddenly resurgent MU basketball institution - The Antlers, the student jeering section that was evicted from its prime seating because of its overboard antics. With shrewd manipulation of the ticketing system, the Antlers have found group seating in Section A again.

Before the game, Tuck pointed an unprovoked finger at the Antlers, who then made him the target of their taunting. So, when Tuck converted the lob, he wheeled upcourt, pointed to the Antlers and mouthed a nasty term their way.

Tuck's exploits earned him a technical foul, something the Antlers, for all their follies, never have brought upon themselves. …

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