No. 7 Missouri 87, Oklahoma 49

Associated Press  |  Last updated January 03, 2012
Kim English had 23 points and nine rebounds, and No. 7 Missouri hit 12 3-pointers to open Big 12 play with an 87-49 rout of Oklahoma on Tuesday night. Marcus Denmon added 20 points for the Tigers (14-0, 1-0), who were 12 for 21 from 3-point range, held the Sooners to 33 percent shooting and outrebounded them 38-23. Missouri is one of four unbeaten teams in the nation under first-year coach Frank Haith - and the Tigers' start is their best since the1981-82 team was 19-0. The margin of victory was Missouri's best in conference play, topping a 31-point spread against Iowa State in 2010. The Tigers beat Texas Tech by 33 points in the Big 12 tournament in 2000. Oklahoma (10-3) suffered one of the most lopsided losses against Missouri in school history. Andrew Fitzgerald scored all but two of his 18 points in the first half for Oklahoma, which has a pair of blowout losses against Missouri schools, falling by 20 points against Saint Louis in November. The third loss was by a point to Cincinnati. The matchup against a school coming off an impressive pre-conference schedule attracted the first sellout of the season of 15,061. That's about a 6,000 improvement from the last home game against William & Mary on Dec. 18. Ricardo Ratliffe added 13 points and eight rebounds, and reserve Michael Dixon had 13 points for Missouri. Steven Pledger added 11 points for Oklahoma, but on 3 for 10 shooting with just three points in the first half while Missouri took a commanding 43-25 lead. Oklahoma has lost six of its last seven conference openers. The Sooners were picked to finish in a tie for last in the Big 12 by coaches but entered the game among the national leaders in rebounding, offensive rebounds, and 3-point percentage, and held their previous seven opponents to 59 points. Missouri topped that total with 13:50 to go on its 10th 3-pointer by English to make it 61-34. Take out Fitzgerald's 16-point half and Oklahoma was just 4 for 19 from the field. Pledger was held to three points on 1 for 7 shooting for the Sooners, who shot 35 percent and whose halftime deficit doubled their previous high. Oklahoma was just 3 for 13 to start the game, falling behind by 10 the first 6:13. Six points from Fitzgerald in a span of 1:16 shaved the deficit to four at 20-16. Missouri answered with a 10-2 run capped by Denmon's 3-pointer with just under 7 minutes to go, and pulled away the rest of the half.
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