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Missouri pulls away to defeat host Vanderbilt


Missouri outrebounded Vanderbilt by 15 and inched ahead in the second half to win their Southeastern Conference matchup 61-52 on Wednesday night.

Guard Xavier Pinson scored 17 points and forward Reed Nikko added 14, for the Tigers (14-14, 6-9 SEC). Fifteen of Pinson's points came in the second half, as Missouri outscored Vanderbilt 34-24.

The Tigers held the Commodores to 6-of-18 shooting from the floor in the second half, and won the overall battle of the boards by 42-27.

Guards Scotty Pippen Jr. and Saben Lee scored 19 and 14 points to lead Vanderbilt (9-19, 1-14).

Vanderbilt led by nine at 27-18 with four minutes left in the first half after Pippen's short jumper in the lane, but the Commodores, managed only a free throw for the rest of the half, and led 28-27 at intermission.

Missouri grabbed the lead right away in the second half when Nikko rammed home a dunk off an alley-oop from Pinson.

Guard Dru Smith hit a 3-pointer with 14:10 left, expanding the Tigers' lead to 39-33. Nikko's added a three-point play 40 seconds later to further widen the lead.

Walk-on guard Drew Weikert drove the lane and banked in a lay-up to pull the Commodores within 42-37 with 11:32 left. It was only their second field goal in a span of 12:27.

Missouri grew its lead to double digits at 47-37 on forward Mitchell Smith's 3-pointer with 9:43 left.

Mitchell Smith's offensive rebound led to a Pinson drive and lay-up to keep Missouri up 53-46 with 4:21 left, and Vanderbilt never got closer than five.

Both teams started slowly. Lee's 3-pointer with 11:05 left tied the game at nine.

Pippen, who had 15 points in the first half, took over the game for a spell. He made a dunk, hit two treys and made a jumper that put Vanderbilt up 19-16 at 6:06 left.

Forward Dylan Disu's 3-pointer from the left corner made it 25-18, before Pippen's short jumper extended the lead to nine.

--Field Level Media

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