On the second day of action in the CBE Hall of Fame Classic in Kansas City, Mo. Tuesday, the Missouri men’s basketball team faced the Northwestern Wildcats in the consolation third-place game. The Tigers tried to mount a second half comeback, but ultimately ran out of time en route to a 67-62 loss.
Just like in the semifinal round, the Tigers were hit with a big early deficit. Northwestern’s Bryant McIntosh hit each of his first three 3-point attempts on the way to a 13-point first half. The Wildcat lead reached as high as 20 points as they also forced 7 Missouri turnovers. At the end of the half, Northwestern led 38-24.
Right as the second half started, the Tigers started to ramp up defensively. Terrence Phillips had one of his best nights in his young Mizzou career and keyed the Tiger surge with his activity on the defensive end. He finished the night with a season-high 16 points, along with six rebounds and four assists. He also helped the Mizzou defense force 14 Northwestern turnovers with four steals. The Tigers outscored Northwestern 38-29 in the second half.
Down the stretch, Mizzou whittled down the Wildcat lead to as low as three points with less than two minutes to go. Foul trouble became a problem for both the Tigers and Wildcats, as McIntosh picked up his fifth foul with just under five minutes left and Phillips was charged with a fifth near the one-minute mark. The Tigers tried to claw back and tie the game with their rejuvenated defense, but some missed shots and inopportune fouls sealed their fate.
The Tigers showed signs of life in the second game of the tournament, but finished the week 0-2 at the Sprint Center after the losses to Northwestern Tuesday and Kansas State Monday. Mizzou’s next contest will be in exactly one week, when they host Arkansas State at Mizzou Arena on Dec. 1.