No. 9 Missouri 84, Texas 73

No. 9 Missouri 84, Texas 73

Published Jan. 14, 2012 10:04 p.m. ET

Missouri needed someone to step up, and Phil Pressey was not shy.

The sophomore point guard had 18 points, including seven straight to get the ninth-ranked Tigers out of trouble in the second half of an 84-73 victory over Texas on Saturday.

Pressey had 10 assists, and perhaps his most impressive stat was zero turnovers.

''He orchestrated the whole game,'' Texas coach Rick Barnes said. ''Look what he did for the other guys. That's what he does. He makes the game really easy for those other guys.''


Ricardo Ratliffe made his first eight shots and had 21 points and Marcus Denmon had 18 points and 11 rebounds for the Tigers (16-1, 3-1 Big 12). Ratliffe, who takes all his shots close to the basket, entered the game leading the nation in shooting at 76.8 percent.

''I just make sure I try to finish the play whenever they look for me,'' Ratliffe said. ''I get down on myself sometimes and my teammates pick me up because I think they don't expect me to miss anymore, either.''

J'Covan Brown scored 34 points, including the 1,000th of his career, for Texas (12-5, 2-2). The point total is a record for an opponent at the Mizzou Arena, which opened in 2004, topping Julian Wright's 33 points for Kansas in 2007.

Brown was 6 for 7 on 3-pointers and made all eight free throws.

''I was just going, just playing. I wasn't worried about carrying my team,'' Brown said. ''Coach was calling my number and I was just making big shots.''

Myck Kabongo had 12 points and 10 assists and Jonathan Holmes had 10 points and seven rebounds for the Longhorns. But Clint Chapman had six points in 16 minutes while saddled with foul trouble and Sheldon McClellan, Texas' second-leading scorer with an 11.8-point average, was held to six points on 2-for-8 shooting.

''It was just silly turnovers, and not capitalizing off our turnovers,'' Kabongo said. ''We've just got to be smarter than what we were today.''

Pressey reached double figures in assists for the fourth time this season and the first in conference play. It helped Missouri go to 10-0 at home, and this was the closest call.

''I tell you what, he had a terrific game,'' Missouri coach Frank Haith said. ''What he meant to us offensively, what he did out there was tremendous. He had the ball all the time.''

Down by 16 points in the first half, Texas shaved the deficit to five midway through the second half with an 11-3 run - Missouri's lone points coming on a three-point play by Pressey.

Pressey ended the threat with a 3-pointer, two free throws and a steal and uncontested dunk in a span of 50 seconds to make it 69-57 with 8:31 to play. After McClellan scored from the baseline for Texas, Pressey fed Steve Moore for an inside basket.

Brown missed part of Pressey's torrid stretch while getting a bloody lip attended to.

Denmon was the only Missouri player who didn't score in double figures in the last game, a victory at Iowa State on Wednesday, with six points on 1-for-5 shooting. He had 14 points at halftime on Saturday.

''Even though the last game I wasn't scoring, you can do other things to help your team win,'' Denmon said. ''That's what's most important.''

Missouri was 8 for 11 from 3-point range in the first half, four of the 3s from Denmon, while taking a 43-30 lead. The Tigers were strong inside, too, with Ratliffe hitting all five shots from point-blank range.

Texas held its previous two opponents to 51 and 49 points, but Missouri blew past that total early in the second half. Missouri was just 2 for 10 on 3-pointers in the second half.

Texas had foul trouble in the first half, with Chapman limited to two points in 4 minutes and reserve Alexis Wangmene scoreless with four rebounds in 11 minutes.

Haith, in his first season at Missouri, beat Barnes, his mentor. Haith was an assistant at Texas from 2001-04, including a Final Four team and two others that made the final 16, and is 1-1 against Barnes including an NCAA tournament loss while at Miami in 2008.

Barnes said criticism of Haith's so-so record at Miami was unwarranted because it was so difficult to win at that school.

''I love Frank,'' Barnes said. ''Missouri did good getting him and they'd better do everything they can to keep him.''